Back to school check list: What you should ask before your kid goes to class

Are you ready for back to school? Make sure you know the answers to these questions before your child goes to class.
Published: Aug. 6, 2020 at 5:35 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Are you ready for back to school? Make sure you know the answers to these questions before your child goes to class.

What are the rules regarding masks?

Every school district may choose to handle masks differently. It’s important to know what your child will need to comply with the rules at their school. Will the school supply a face covering? Several stores offer masks made especially for kids, including Target and Amazon.

What is the new schedule?

Some school districts are implementing a staggered schedule to help keep the number of kids in the classroom low. Check with your child’s school for details about it or when they will be expected to attend class in person.

How will students be screened for COVID-19 symptoms?

Will you need to check your child’s temperature at home or will it be handled as they enter school? Make sure you know what your school expects.

Will my child be tested for COVID-19?

What type of testing will be implemented? When might your child be expected to get tested for COVID-19? Many East Tennessee locations offer testing for free. Find the one nearest you here.

What back-to-school health exams will be required?

The University of Tennessee is now requiring students to get a flu shot before returning to campus. Has your school district made changes to health exams or vaccination requirements?

What happens if a parent or family member tests positive?

Consider making a contingency plan in case one family member tests positive and everyone in the home needs to quarantine. Will your child be able to continue class online during that time?

What happens if there’s a new COVID-19 case surge in the district?

Do your school officials have a plan for a possible closure if cases at the school surge?

How will students be notified if classes are canceled?

Make sure you opt in to text messages or other online systems that allow schools to notify parents quickly if anything about the plan changes.

How will classrooms be cleaned?

Some schools are making extra time in the day’s schedule for cleaning between students. Others are installing state-of-the-art air purifiers. What measures is your school taking?

Will food be provided to kids who stay home?

Some families rely on school lunches and many districts offer options for pick up even without in-person classes. Check with your district to learn their plan.

What will lunch at school look like?

Will kids be given pre-packaged foods? Will they eat in the cafeteria or the classroom? Will sending school lunches from home still be allowed? Information about lunchtime changes can help you be prepared.

Will additional school nurses be on site?

What happens if your child gets sick at school? The Tennessee Nurses Association told WVLT News there is a shortage of available school nurses in the state. How is your school handling this need?

WVLT News is working diligently to help parents get the answers they need. Learn more about The Knox County plan here.

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