CDC classroom social distance change hastens schools' return to full-time, in-person learning

Three feet have changed the course of local school districts as they try to navigate Covid-19 in the classroom.

Posted: Mar 19, 2021 6:01 PM


Three feet have changed the course of local school districts as they try to navigate Covid-19 in the classroom.

"We're gearing up for full time in person, not in person hybrid," says Utica School Superintendent, Bruce Karam, head of the largest school district in Oneida County. "On Tuesday night's board meeting, I'm gonna present to the board a revised reopening plan that will include the new cdc guidance."

The CDC on Friday modified their recommendation for social distancing in K-12 classrooms, reducing it from six feet, to three. It was the last real impediment to returning to 100% in-person learning in Utica; the district simply didn't have enough room to place all of its 11,000 students six feet apart.

"We will start a phase-in process because we're looking at thousands of students. We'll start with elementary phase in, go to middle and then the high because we have busing we have to organize and schedule," says Karam. The phased-in approach will begin with elementary students after spring break, on April 12th.

The Whitesboro Central School District, according to their website, plans on bringing all students back for in-person learning April 12th, as does Oriskany. For Oriskany and Utica, the only options going forward will be full-time in-person, or full-time remote. Rome City Schools are asking parents in their district to fill out a return to full-time learning questionnaire, again, with the only two options being full-time in-person and full-time remote.

Officials with the Rome Teachers Union say there won't be any roadblocks from them, once Rome is out with their return-to-full-time-learning plan.

"Our union, the Rome Teacher's Association, is in direct line with our parent organizations NYSUT and AFT and I don't see them throwing any blocks up except for stressing, as I have, safety first," says Rome Teachers Association President, Rob Wood.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2511182

Reported Deaths: 56008
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings33248910839
Queens31448010282
Suffolk2384943593
Nassau2137303286
Bronx2071526748
New York1675934633
Westchester1434342338
Erie1056611940
Richmond886031932
Monroe837081182
Orange57270909
Rockland52918779
Onondaga51624757
Dutchess35451497
Albany30581388
Oneida28418582
Broome24183403
Niagara23854397
Saratoga20080198
Ulster17205278
Schenectady16584227
Rensselaer14669167
Putnam1243996
Chautauqua12308173
Oswego11505112
Chemung10772153
St. Lawrence10392126
Steuben10019173
Ontario9278110
Jefferson870974
Cayuga8600107
Sullivan842083
Wayne807484
Cattaraugus7613113
Genesee6933132
Herkimer6694126
Clinton665438
Tompkins646559
Fulton6244102
Madison6124102
Montgomery5878138
Livingston566871
Warren538682
Cortland529479
Tioga502571
Columbia4977111
Chenango464986
Allegany456296
Washington454667
Otsego453554
Greene435186
Wyoming434458
Orleans428587
Franklin421820
Lewis355638
Delaware352147
Seneca271963
Schoharie227621
Essex226331
Yates160528
Schuyler151817
Hamilton4343
Unassigned14826
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