School District of La Crosse releases tentative fall plans

Over $420,000 has been set aside to increase safety measures in buildings
Published: Jul. 16, 2020 at 6:35 PM CDT
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All School District of La Crosse faculty and students entering school buildings will be screened daily as a part of the fall plan.

A decision on face coverings will be decided later, but certain activities will require it including riding the bus.

The plan has been in the works for months.

“Since March 18th when schools were shut down everything we’ve been thinking about is not only how do we close schools and educate students in a remote emergency setting, but also how do we reopen them,” said Dr. Aaron Engel, the School District of La Crosse superintendent.

K-5 will be held in-person with limited interaction outside of classes and every student given an ipad in case virtual learning is needed.

All middle and high school students will have a blended learning model with certain days in-person and others online to allow social distancing.

The district has set aside over $420,000 to fund changes needed due to the virus.

“Our office went through each building with the principal, building engineer, and our school nurses to evaluate,” said Scott Johnson, the School District of La Crosse Buildings and Grounds manager. “We put together a checklist of things we need to add.”

Some items needing to be added include plexiglass barriers, bottle filling fountains, separation stickers, and safety signage.

Additionally, isolation rooms will be created.

“If a student comes in and shows symptoms whether it’s when they come in while they’re being screened or during the school day, we have a room set aside for them so that they’re away from everybody else, but they’re supervised,” Johnson explained.

The funding came from the Capital Improvement Plan, as a result some projects have been pushed-- including replacing theater seating at Logan High School and playground upgrades.

The district is also a part of the Coulee Region Virtual Academy for families who wish to stay home.

“We’re making our plans on the least restrictive conditions, so right now we’re planning as though every student is coming back,” Dr. Engel added.

The rough draft for the plan also increases cleaning, limits visitors, and circulates more outside air into buildings.

Flexibility is the district’s main goal when it comes to planning for back-to-school.

Copyright 2020 WEAU. All rights reserved.

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