The Daviess County Public Schools Board of Education is considering revisions in the instructional calendar for the 2020-2021 school year amid COVID-19 concerns. Here's what we know.

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Reopening schools amid the COVID-19 pandemic has been a concern all over the country. In a meeting today, the Board considered a recommendation to change the first day of school for students to Wednesday, August 26th, 2020.

We believe in-person instruction is important to the growth and learning of every child,” said Superintendent Matt Robbins.

The previous start of the school year would have been August 12th, 2020. The Board will vote on these recommendations at their next meeting, which begins at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, June 18th. The public may view the meeting on the district YouTube channel.

Additionally, according to the announcement, DCPS director of student services Damon Fleming also recommended the removal of September 25th, 2020 as a professional development day. With the new calendar, students will be in school on that date.

Fleming also recommended a change of adding 15 minutes to the end of each day school is in session. This change will allow the district to meet mandated instructional hour requirements without adding additional days to the calendar. Elementary schools will start at 7:40 a.m. and end at 2:35 p.m. Middle and high schools will begin at 8:10 a.m. and end at 3:30 p.m.

Dates for Spring Break, Fall Break, Thanksgiving Break and Christmas Break remain unchanged. As previously announced, students will return to classes on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021, after Christmas Break. The last day of school for students remains unchanged at May 21. As always, that date is subject to change to make up days missed for inclement weather or other reasons.

"The proposed revisions will allow our schools the opportunity to train and prepare teachers and staff for new requirements and protocols pertaining to COVID-19,” Fleming said, adding that this may include such measures as daily temperature checks, face coverings and physical distancing. “This also allows additional time for our district to procure personal protective equipment, including masks and gloves.” The delayed opening will also provide additional time for the district to communicate with families and the community regarding requirements that will allow schools to operate in a safe environment.

If approved, the revised 2020-21 calendar will be available on the district website on Friday, June 19. Visit  www.dcps.org  and click on “Calendars” in the red menu bar.

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