LaRue County Schools are returning to in-person instruction today for the first time since closing schools up in the spring.

This year’s online learning, which began Aug. 24 is different than from last spring, which was quickly put together after schools closed in mid-March when the COVID-19 pandemic initially hit, said Amanda Reed, the district’s assistant superintendent for student achievement.

“Everyone pulled together and our staff did an amazing job of adjusting throughout the spring to meet student needs,” she said in an email.

Reed said they heard from families, students and staff about what worked and didn’t from the spring and were able to take time in the summer to prepare for online learning.

For this school year, she said they have a greater emphasis on trying to connect with students in groups.

“Teachers found that not only did students benefit from the learning they could do in a group setting online, but they really enjoyed being able to see and interact with their classmates during the group meetings as well,” Reed said in the email.

She also said students this school year would be encountering teachers they haven’t had before, so teachers have been intentional about implementing “get-to-know-you” activities to build relationships with students.

“Teachers have found great learning resources and they’re growing professionally by leaning on each other and sharing together,” Reed said.

Guidance put into place for the district include requiring masks for grades first through 12th, social distancing as much as possible, consistently cleaning and sanitizing, screening students and having assigned seats for contact tracing.

The district also is implementing a hybrid learning model for grades ninth through 12, which may be extended to the rest of the district is conditions warrant it.

Students will be split in two groups, blue and white. Blue will attend school in-person Mondays, Wednesdays and every other Friday, while white will attend Tuesdays, Thursdays and the opposite Friday.

Andrew Harp can be reached at 270-505-1747 or aharp@thenewsenterprise.com.

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