Seymour, Brownstown implementing hybrid schedule for middle and high schools


Editor’s note: This post was changed at 7 p.m. due to changes announced by Brownstown Central Community School Corp.

Due to the continued spread of COVID-19 in Jackson County, Seymour Community School Corp. has implemented a hybrid schedule for students in grades 6 through 12.

No changes are being made at the elementary level at this time, and school buses will run their regular routes, school officials said.

Beginning Monday, students whose last name begins with the letters A through L will attend school in person Monday and Tuesday, followed by an eLearning day Wednesday and remote virtual learning Thursday and Friday.

Students with last names beginning with the letters M through Z will participate in remote learning Monday and Tuesday and eLearning Wednesday and attend school in person Thursday and Friday.

The decision is based on the state’s new color-coded map that assigns counties a color — blue, yellow, orange or red — indicating the severity of the virus’ spread in a community. It’s based on a formula of the number of new cases per 100,000 students, the positivity rate and recent change in that rate.

Jackson County’s color changed to orange Wednesday, said Diane Altemeyer, director of federal and state programs for SCSC. Status updates are made by the state every Wednesday at noon, and the situation will be reevaluated at that time, she said.

In the last seven days, Jackson County has seen 120 new positive cases of the virus for a total of 964 cases, giving the county a 13.6% positivity rate. There have been 10 reported COVID deaths in the county.

The next level after orange would be red, which is the worst level. If Jackson County’s color would change to red, the middle school and high school would begin virtual learning Monday through Friday and cancel school assemblies and extracurricular activities, Altemeyer said.

All plans are subject to change without notice due to the nature of the pandemic, she added.

School breakfast and lunch meals will continue to be available for students each day. Food service will post plans to distribute meals through the schools’ websites and social media by the end of the week, she said.

Parents may be contacted personally by program directors or teachers if their child has special education programming.

Since schools are closed this week for fall break, parents, guardians or students can email questions to building principals or to Assistant Superintendent Lisa Ferguson at [email protected].

Brownstown Central

Brownstown Central middle and high schools also will be changing to a hybrid scheduled starting Monday.

All students currently participating in traditional in-person instruction are to attend school Monday.

Beginning Tuesday, BCMS and BCHS students will report on an alternating (every other day) schedule as follows: Red Day will be last names beginning with A through J and any other household member with a different last name, and Black Day will be last names K through Z.

Tuesday will be a Red Day.

This has no effect on Brownstown Elementary School students. Per state guidelines, BES will continue to offer traditional in-person instruction to students as they have all year.

“We will continue to follow all of the safeguarding procedures that are currently in place,” Superintendent Tim Taylor said. “This change is not a result of COVID-19 in our schools, but in the community.”

Friday’s home football game versus Scottsburg will be played with adherence to safety precautions by fans.

“We will continue to take every possible precaution to keep our students and staff healthy and safe,” Taylor said. “We also apologize for any inconvenience this causes our families.”

Find the story in Thursday’s Tribune.

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