CCSD leaders making plans to get majority of students back for in-person learning for upcoming school year

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – The Charleston County School District (CCSD) is continuing to plan ahead for the next school year, with in person learning in mind.

Charleston County School District board leaders are carefully optimistic about lower COVID-19 numbers.

CCSD leaders say next school year they want to have less virtual learning to get a majority of their students back in the classroom, but in order for that to happen they will need more teachers.

The district says they are continuing to recover from a pandemic, that still is not over.

Dr. Gerrita Postlewait, CCSD Superintendent, said, “We are still in a range where all of us need to exercise precautions and we’re emphasizing that in schools everyday.”

CCSD leaders are wanting to get a head start for the upcoming school year, but with the pandemic still ongoing much is still up to question. But, the dates are set.

“The first day of school will be August 18th. We certainly hope that a majority of our parents will feel comfortable sending their children back to school — we have a little over 75% of students coming to school in person,” said Dr. Postlewait. “We hope to significantly increase that percentage when students return in August.”

This calendar includes the dates for teacher work days, spring and winter break, and a few e-learning days.

As for students who want to continue e-learning full time, CCSD is working to solidify the options.

“We will offer virtual options for Kindergarten through the 8th grade and for high school students next year,” said Dr. Postelwait. “We want to continue the high school offering indefinitely.”

With in-person learning, the district is keeping up the social distancing efforts while keeping classroom sizes smaller.

Dr. Postlewait said, “We’ll have to open up this school year wearing masks and with the plexiglass dividers and the limited numbers of seats in a classroom… we’ll have to have more teachers. So we need all of our teachers that we could possibly move to teach in-person instruction.”

A challenging school year on the horizon, but CCSD leaders say they are confident in their staff and the patience of the community.

CCSD leaders will be meeting again in March to have a bigger discussion on in-person and virtual learning plans for the upcoming school year.