It’s been a confusing several days in Elkhart County regarding the start of school.
The Elkhart County Health Department is no longer recommending schools cancel in-person classes for the first few weeks of school. This, after, several districts announced on Thursday they would hold virtual classes for the first few weeks of school due to recommendations of the health department.
On Friday, Aug. 7, health leaders received information from state officials that prompted a change in their recommendation that was given just one day before Friday. With that, several school districts have reversed course and now plan to hold in-classroom instruction at least part of the time.
Dozens of high school students and athletes were outside the Elkhart County Health Department on Friday afternoon, protesting the county’s suggestion that all schools start the school year online and postpone fall sports to at least late September.
As of Friday afternoon, four of the nine schools in the county — Jimtown, Northridge, Northwood and Concord — have suspended athletic activities.
Schools can only hold extracurricular activities in-person if social distancing of at least six feet during the meeting, activity or event can be achieved and maintained.
If social distancing requirements cannot be met, those activities are cancelled through Aug. 24.
95.3 MNC’s reporting partners at ABC 57 collected the following information:
Baugo Community Schools – Baugo schools have reverted to their original reopening plan and will offer in person and virtual instruction beginning August 13.
Concord Schools – School begins on August 12 in the original Hybrid A/B in person format. Students may also participate in virtual-only classes.
Elkhart Community Schools – Students who are enrolled in Plan 1 (alternating days) will begin reporting to school on Monday, August 17 for Group A and Tuesday, August 18 for Group B. Online students who chose Plan 2 will begin classes on Monday, August 17. School was scheduled to begin on August 13, but because recent guidance from the health department was going to recommend online instruction, our superintendent authorized our food service department to cancel a fresh produce order to avoid waste. For a district our size, we are unable to have enough food to serve student lunches until Monday, August 17. August 13 and August 14 will be made up on February 26 and March 19 since these days will not be waived by the Indiana Department of Education. PLEASE NOTE: The first day of school will now be Monday, August 17.
Fairfield Community Schools – Fairfield schools will return to its original plan and will start in-person instruction on Wednesday, August 12.
Goshen Community Schools – The district will begin the school year with virtual learning on August 11 through August 14. On August 17, the district will revert to its original plan. Students in grades K-5 will return to school with shortened days (7:50 a.m.-1:30 p.m.), with eLearning for specials. Students in grades 6-12 will return to school on August 17, 2020 in Course IV. Students with last names starting with A-L will attend in-school classes on Monday and Tuesday, and have virtual classes on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Students with last names starting with M-Z will have virtual classes on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and attend in-school classes on Thursday and Friday.
Middlebury Schools – Middlebury schools will revert to their original plan and begin in-person and virtual classes on August 12.
Wa-Nee Community Schools – Wa-Nee schools will begin in-person or virtual classes on August 17, depending on the family’s choice.