Marion County Public Schools is exploring the option of returning to In-Person learning using a hybrid A/B weekly schedule.
MCPS Superintendent Taylora Schlosser has said she will recommend to the Marion County Board of Education that the school district add a hybrid schedule as an option. The Marion County Board of Education’s next regularly scheduled meeting is Thursday, January 14. (UPDATE: This option was approved).
Under the hybrid schedule, approximately half of MCPS students would attend In-Person learning on Mondays and Tuesdays, which would be referred to as ‘A’ days; the other half would attend In-Person learning on Thursdays and Fridays, which would be referred to as ‘B’ days.
Wednesdays would be NTI days with the option for In-Person small group instruction as well as providing an opportunity for additional cleaning of school buildings.
Students would still join classes online when they are not learning In-Person. For example, ‘A’ day students would join their classes online each Thursday and Friday; ‘B’ day students would join their classes online each Monday and Tuesday.
Students from the same household would attend In-Person learning on the same day, and families would still have the option of remaining enrolled in Distance-Learning full-time.
Schlosser noted that the hybrid schedule would provide a way for the district to ease back into In-Person learning with fewer students in the facilities while also providing important services and student-staff interaction.
“Obviously, I would love to be in a position to return to In-Person learning for all students, but this is a step in that direction,” Schlosser said. “I think we have families and staff members who will be more comfortable with In-Person learning knowing that there will be fewer people in the building, and this gives our students an opportunity to regain some of that in-person interaction that we know is so important. Hopefully, we can eventually return to full In-Person learning.”
Based on the guidance the school district has received, In-Person learning could continue while Marion County’s incidence rate is in the red zone if it operated under the type of hybrid system Schlosser is recommending.
However, Schlosser also said that even with a hybrid schedule as an option, MCPS could potentially continue with Distance-Learning for all students.
“We are still monitoring all of our available data which continues to fluctuate,” Schlosser said. “I just want this hybrid schedule as another option available to us.”
Officials in MCPS are currently making plans for food service, transportation, and assigning households in the event the school district does move to a hybrid schedule.