INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Public Schools will open its doors and roll its buses on Oct. 5. Students in pre-kindergarten through third grade will be the first to return to in-class learning five days week.
"Our ability to open right now as we are planning to is really based on staffing, students who choose in-person versus remote learning and to meet the safety protocols to provide that instruction,” Aleesia Johnson, IPS superintendent, said.
Since picking up their iPads and Chromebooks, IPS students have been learning from home since August due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
They'll begin a slow return to school in matter of weeks.
The first wave on Oct. 5 will only include pre-kindergartners through third graders.
The week of Oct. 12, which is scheduled to be fall break, all students will learn remotely.
Then, on Oct. 19, grades pre-k through fifth grade will return to in-class learning five days a week.
Sixth-graders through high school will be on a hybrid model with students based on their last names attending classes in person twice a week and three days remotely.
Families who prefer to keep their kids learning at home will have that option. The option to sign up for that begins Wednesday, Sept. 16 and ends on Sept. 21.
“We will be flexible and responsive to health data and what data we get from our community and families ensuring we have a plan that's strong to support our kids and learning whichever the model may be," Johnson said.
The district is encouraging parents to walk or drive their children if they can to school over the first few weeks. This will allow for increased social distance on school buses which will be assigned a monitor to ensure compliance with COVID-19 rules like students wearing masks.
IPS also plans to post online any confirmed cases of COVID-19 at each of its schools.
Students, teachers, and staff will be required to wear masks while in class.