Lake County superintendents answer questions about schools reopening

900 questions submitted

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. – Parents in Lake County submitted more than 900 questions to the school board.

The superintendent and assistant superintendent held two separate Q&A sessions on Facebook Live Monday, answering those questions from concerned parents in their district.

They announced that each student, no matter their chosen learning option, will receive a Chromebook to use throughout the school year.

For students attending middle and high brick-and-mortar schools, schedules will be different from previous years. High school will begin at 7:20 a.m. and end at 1:35 p.m. and middle school will start at 10 a.m. and end at 4:05 p.m. Middle schools will have alternating day blocks.

[READ: Everything you need to know about Lake County’s back-to-school plan | Q&A: How should parents talk to kids about going back to school during the COVID-19 pandemic?]

“Students will take periods one, three and five on A day and then the next day take periods two, four and six. This options allow for less transitions, which will help keep students safer,” Assistant Superintendent of Teaching, Learning and Leadership Dr. Emily Weiskopf said.

High schools will have four classes each day.

“They’ll have one class that extends all year and the other three periods are semester only. So they’ll be getting a year’s worth of credit for classes they take in a semester,” Weiskopf said.

The times for elementary schools will remain the same. Parents asked if students will have recess and the answer was yes.

“We’ve been working with the Department of Health and we obviously don’t expect kids to wear a mask outside during recess, that’s not healthy. It’s important to give them some sort of normalcy and the DOH says outside the risk of kids transmitting the virus is lower... we will be making sure the equipment is cleaned throughout the day and reminding the kids about proper hygiene and social distancing,” Superintendent Diane Kornegay said.

A parent asked, "What is the difference between Lake Virtual and Lake Live options?"

“There’s three main differences. For Lake Live, one is you stay enrolled in your home school. The other is that it’s taught, for the most part, by teachers at your home school. Third, and probably most important, is that Lake Live follows the traditional bell schedule so we think about what that looks like, you will be logging in at particular times and staying online and in the course for the duration of the class period,” Weiskopf said.

“The greatest advantages of Lake Virtual is that it is self-paced and provides flexibility for parents and students,” Kornegay said.

[RELATED: News 6 hosts town hall on reopening Central Florida schools | What would your school do if someone tests positive for coronavirus?]

Another parent asked, "Why no temperature checks on all students and teachers before entering the schools?"

“This was a conversation we had with the Department of Health who said that the cost of providing thermometers in every school probably would not be our best investment, because a fever is not always present, especially in children. And someone who may have taken Tylenol before they went to school would not exhibit a temperature, so we will be doing temperature checks on students and adults that exhibit symptoms and those will be done by our school nurses,” Kornegay said.

The district says many parents had the question, “What if a student gets sick?”

"That student will be removed from the classroom and students will be placed in an isolated area away from the students where the nurse and student can meet."

If a teacher or student tests positive for the virus, the Lake County School District said its own response team will work with the Department of Health on contact tracing and notifying any individuals who may need to quarantine.

There are four options for students in Lake County:

  • Traditional
  • Modified Day
  • Lake Live
  • Lake Virtual

The deadline for parents to make a decision is Wednesday by 11:59 p.m. Click here to learn more about the options and to submit an enrollment intent form.

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