Superintendents Advisory Council meets to discuss how to serve students in safe, fair way

Published: Jul. 20, 2020 at 4:33 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Discussions continue about what this coming school year will look like.

Monday, the Superintendent Advisory Council met to discuss how to serve all students in a safe and fair way.

School districts across Kentucky have questions about reopening: Can we depend on a full year of in-person instruction like normal? Will they have to adjust plans and move to online learning like last year? And how will that affect each student on a day to day basis?

“We weren’t one of those states that closed and, as the commissioner of education shared several times, Kentucky never ever said this is just too hard so we need to close. We transitioned quickly,” said SAC member Gretta Hylton.

Superintendents agreed that there could be a need to institute some form of non-traditional instruction during the coming school year and state education officials clarified what that could mean.

“That’s an approach I think everyone is familiar with,” said SAC member David Cook. “That’s more of what we might refer to as a blended model, where the kids are getting both in-person instruction and home virtual instruction.”

Essentially, NTI days can only be used if the whole school district is off and learning via NTI. However, school officials are exploring methods of learning like partial in-person learning, full-time virtual schooling and partial school district closings

“When we say online, virtual, blended, hybrid, remote, digital, all of these terms can mean different things to different people,” said SAC member Marty Park. “Getting everybody on the same page with what strategy you are referring to is extremely important.”

So, long as school districts can provide the needed resources to all students including those with disabilities.

“The thing that we have to be the most careful about is that students with disabilities are able to participate to the fullest extent in whichever environment,” Hylton said.

Discussions leading to the start of school will continue in August at the next Superintendent Advisory Council Meeting.

Superintendents did raise concerns about some teachers fearing for their health safety if they returned to teaching. Education officials said they are sending out guidance as far as teacher leave and ways to inform the type of cleaning and sanitation going on in schools.

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