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Columbus schools plan on-time August start

Virtual learning will be offered
Posted at 9:14 PM, Jul 20, 2020

COLUMBUS — School in Columbus will begin on time, following a vote by the school board Monday.

Start date for the 11,000 student Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation will be August 6. The board approved that date on a 5-2 vote.

But there is flexibility in the plan if COVID-19 concerns grow more serious in coming days. Additionally, under the plan approved Monday, virtual learning will be an option for families not comfortable with having their children in school buildings.

Board members were told to be ready for a special meeting if needed should virus numbers in the county south of Indianapolis shoot up.

Most of the Monday's session was devoted to the school reopening plan. Some members of the public who spoke were not comfortable with having buildings reopen on August 6. Others felt it was time to get kids back in classroom settings following the closure of schools on March 11.

Under the plan, students and staff will be required to wear masks. Additionally, students will have their temperatures checked each day when they get on a school bus, or arriving at school. There will be frequent hand washing and as much social distancing as possible in a school setting.

School Superintendent Dr. Jim Roberts said it would take a "community effort" to make the school reopening plan work.