Hamilton County Schools announce split reopening plans


Hamilton County Schools announced the ‘Safe Start, Great Start’ opening plan for this month.

News 12’s Bekah Birdsall has the latest.

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Hamilton county schools are starting the school year with a ‘Safe Start, Great Start’ Initiative.

For the first few weeks of school, Students will be broken up into A and B groups.

Students that are in group A will attend in person class Monday and Tuesday and Group B will attend Thursday and Friday.

The other days will be through virtual learning.

“We thought it would be best if we slow walked the opening process and that’s why we’re launching the safe start, great start campaign. SO that, regardless of the phase we can be very thoughtful and intentional about how we open schools just to get started.”

After the first few weeks, Hamilton county schools will follow the phased approach to learning.

Neelie Parker, Chief Schools Officer for Hamilton county schools, emphasized how much effort was put into this reopening plan.

Including many virtual townhall meetings with staff and parents.

This morning, Mayor Andy Berke spoke with us this morning saying he does not think students should be returning to in person learning right now.

“The school system is trying to do the responsible thing, they are putting kids in a hybrid model because they have been looking at numbers overall. Our case numbers are going down but that doesn’t make, mean that everything is good, we’re still in one of the high risk categories.”

Parker explains how this reopening plan will cater to the 47,000 students Hamilton County schools serve.

“Well if you haven’t met your teachers or haven’t been issued your chromebook, you can’t start school until all of that is established for you, so our purpose in opening small, smaller groups on the 12th and 13th is so we can issue chromebooks, we can get student’s schedules settled.”

Schools start in Hamilton County August 12th, and parents can opt to virtual learning at any time.

Reporting in Hamilton county, Bekah Birdsall, News 12 Now.