Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Thursday that schools will remain closed for the rest of the 2019-20 school year as a precautionary measure due to the coronavirus and COVID-19 pandemic.
Most Jackson County public school districts have since shared their plans.
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Brownstown Central Community School Corp. Superintendent Tim Taylor said details will be shared on the Brownstown Schools Facebook page and also the Facebook pages for each of the corporation’s three schools.
He planned to consult with nearly a dozen other superintendents to share ideas.
“We want to do what’s best for our students and our community,” Taylor said.
In terms of continuing with eLearning, he said he needs to talk to the board of trustees and other superintendents for guidance.
“Also get some feedback from our teachers and parents on how the eLearning has been going,” Taylor said. “We’ve had very positive response to this point.”
The corporation plans to continue delivering meals to students on Tuesdays. Every student in a household receives five breakfasts and five lunches. Taylor said around 230 students are being served right now, and if parents would like to add their child to the distribution list, they should send an email to [email protected].
Prom originally was scheduled for April 17 but was moved to May 8. If that changes, Taylor said Principal Joe Sheffer will make an announcement.
Taylor said a decision about graduation has not yet been made.
“We’re going to do everything we can to try to provide a memorable graduation and experience for the Class of 2020 under the circumstances with which we’re dealing,” Taylor said.
“We’re going to do the best we can for the students, which is what we want to do always,” he said. “We don’t know if there will be an in-person ceremony. We’re going through all considerations right now. We want to do the best we can for the Class of 2020. They deserve it.”
Crothersville Community School Corp. will utilize eLearning today through Thursday.
Then eLearning days be April 14 through 17 and April 20 through 23. The corporation will use state-approved waiver days April 13 and 24, so there will be no instruction.
The final eLearning week will be April 27 through May 1 with the latter date being the last day of school.
On Friday, a post was shared on the Crothersville Junior-Senior High School Facebook page letting the Class of 2020 know it will have a graduation ceremony.
“The administration at CHS is currently working out details and logistics for a graduation program,” the post reads. “Due to restrictions, this graduation will be unorthodox, but we are prepared to think outside the box. Rest assured, graduates, we will be creative in this process. Our goal is to provide the best program possible without putting anyone at risk.”
Information will be posted on the Facebook page as details are confirmed.
Medora Community School Corp. will have eLearning days Tuesday and Wednesday this week. The next four weeks, eLearning will be Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
The last student day will be May 7.
Lunch will continue to be served from 11 a.m. to noon each weekday until May 21 with the exception of April 10. Anyone age 0 to 18 may pick up a to-go meal from the school. Those along bus routes within Carr Township may call the school at 812-966-2201 between 8 and 10 a.m. to schedule meal delivery.
Administrators are working on a plan for graduation, and information will be released as soon as it is available.
“We know that there are many changes happening all around us, and this can be a worrisome time for you as a parent and for your child/children,” administration said in a post on the corporation’s Facebook page.
“We want to assure you that the health and safety of our school community remains our No. 1 priority. Our administration, teachers and staff are committed to ensuring that you and your student feel supported during this time and want to thank you for your continued support and understanding.”
Seymour Community School Corp. Superintendent Brandon Harpe said the district will continue with its eLearning program and schedule for the remainder of the school year.
The eLearning days are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. The last day of school is May 7.
“Our students and staff are growing in their abilities to use remote school every day; however, digital classrooms cannot and will not replace firsthand classroom experiences,” Harpe said. “We miss our students and look forward to the day we can return to normal.”
Seymour High School Principal Greg Prange said with great heartache, this year’s prom has been canceled. It was originally scheduled for April 24 and then moved to May 15, but with the extension of school building closures, social distancing recommendations, increasing risk and seriousness of the virus pandemic and coordination it takes for prom, the decision was made to cancel.
The senior dinner May 11 is canceled for many of the same reasons, and Prange said honor day scheduled for May 14 will not be traditional. More details will be announced.
“Our presenters have recently been contacted and have been informed that the strong possibility exists that we will conduct a virtual honor day ceremony without an audience, much like how some churches are currently conducting services without a congregation,” Prange said.
Graduation is currently scheduled for May 31. Following the lead of several colleges and universities across the country, Prange said plans are underway to conduct a virtual graduation ceremony.
“Unlike prom and senior dinner, which each requires a mass gathering, there are ways in which we can conduct a graduation ceremony that provides the recognition, honor and respect such an accomplishment deserves while still observing these safety guidelines,” he said. “As such, we still plan to distribute caps, gowns, gold stoles, academic honor medals and other graduation materials prior to this event.”
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