The Loudoun County School Board on Tuesday will consider a proposal to return students to class on a part-time basis as early as Feb. 16.
In-person learning was suspended just before the winter break in December because of increasing levels of community spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.
As caseloads begin to decline following the expected post-holiday spike and state and national leaders press for schools to reopen, the School Board is evaluating new strategies that will allow in-person classes to resume unless there are on-campus outbreaks.
Under the latest proposal, hybrid classes—providing at least two days of in-person learning—would resume for special education students, English language learners, students in grades K-5 and some students enrolled at the Academies of Loudoun as long as on-campus mitigation measures are being closely followed. Then, the hybrid program could be expanded to middle and high school students as early as March 3.
Since classrooms were closed in December, the division has implemented a number of new safety measures, including the installation of air purifiers in all classrooms and thermal cameras at school entrances. The division this week is beginning to install sneeze guards on student and teacher desks.
Also, the effort to provide vaccinations to the school staff is gearing up, with more than 3,700 shots delivered during the first week of a dedicated distribution program conducted by the division’s nursing staff.
The hybrid classes would be open to families who selected that option in surveys last year—about half of the division’s 81,000 students. Others are expected to remain in distance learning for the remainder of the school year.