Radford City Public School students head to classrooms tomorrow

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YouTube screenshot – Dr. Noelle Bissell, director of the Virginia Department of Health New River District, answers a questions submitted on-line by parents and others during Monday’s health and safety meeting held at Bobcat Stadium.

Heather Bell

RADFORD – School begins tomorrow, Thursday, Aug. 13, for some Radford City Public School students, with one-half of the students opting for in-person learning starting tomorrow and the other half on Friday.

Families were given three options for education this year: a hybrid schedule with two days a week in school and three days learning from home, a Virtual Virginia option with complete at-home education but still enrolled as a RCPS student or homeschooling. In a survey completed in June, the majority of survey takers said their choice was the hybrid option. Students in the “Rockin’ R’s” group attend in person on Mondays and Thursdays, and “Bobcats” will attend on Tuesdays and Fridays. The school will be deep cleaned on Wednesdays.

Monday, school and health department officials held an information session at Bobcat Stadium on health and safety measures taken by the school system in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Superintendent Robert Graham and Dr. Noelle Bissell, director of the Virginia Department of Health New River District, fielded questions submitted on-line by parents and others.

According to the officials, students desks will be six feet apart, with students facing each other’s backs. Masks will be required if six feet social distancing is not possible for the moment and highly encouraged even if social distancing is maintained. All students will be required to wear masks – no medical exceptions will be permitted.

“it is masks up for everyone,”said Graham. “Let me be real clear. Every child has to wear a mask. If they are medically fragile and can’t wear a mask they need to go virtual.”

Every child will have a health screening each morning they come to school which will consist of a short questionnaire and a temperature check.

Monday’s meeting can be viewed on YouTube. A wealth of school information can be accessed at www.rcps.org.