Students will start a week later than planned in August.
Last evening, the Loveland City School District Board of Education approved a calendar change for the 2020-2021 school year to allow COVID-19-related health and safety training for staff to take place before the students return. School would have started on August 19, but is now set to begin for students a week later, on Wednesday, August 26.
“We are continuing to work on plans for the reopening of school in the fall,” said Superintendent Dr. Amy Crouse. “State officials are expected to release the guidance for schools this week. We will prioritize the safety of students and staff, utilize the feedback we have received from families, make the necessary adjustments to our plans, and work closely with Hamilton County Public Health to ensure those plans are in line with the guidance.”
The district surveyed parents on whether they - with the information that is available today - would choose an in-person or online model of school in the fall. Over 1,900 responses were received from families, representing well over 3,000 children in Kindergarten through 12th grade.
“The in-person model can be adjusted to a half-capacity and blended learning model if necessary,” said Crouse. “On the days students are not physically in school, they will be engaged in remote learning. If the school buildings have to close for health or safety reasons, all students will engage in remote learning. The online learning model means students receive only online instruction in their core courses while having limited availability to electives and specials.”
Included in the discussion on returning to school at the Tuesday board business meeting was the potential of delaying the daily start time for Loveland High School students. The delayed start would allow students more time to get to school, a research-based decision for adolescent sleep requirements that was made feasible by the removal of high school bus transportation.
The board also approved additional increases in pay-to-participate fees for athletics and other activities at Loveland High School and Middle School due to the failed operating levy on the March ballot. The fee for each high school sport in 2020-21 will be $310. Fees, which were $110 for all sports with the exception of football and lacrosse in 2019-20, were initially raised to $175 as a result of budget cuts earlier in the year. Middle school sports will each cost the participants $265. Additional fees ranging from $10 to $50 will apply to current fees for fine arts activities, such as drama, band, and show choir.