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KCS plan for childcare if school district “goes red” during pandemic

The district will help provide childcare, but not for all in-school students
Published: Sep. 8, 2020 at 9:56 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Officials with Knox County Schools say in the event the school district “goes red," they will help student enrolled in school care programs to continue learning virtually, while socially distanced within the school.

Julie Thompson, Knox County School’s Executive Director of Elementary says a school can go code red for two reasons: if there is a significant spread of an illness within a school or community or if there aren’t enough substitutes to work with the children.

If either of these takes place, the district will help to provide childcare for students enrolled in after-school care.

“We are allowing our current after school providers to operate during red days. Currently, they’re just there after school hours, but on red days they will be able to work. The full day. Beginning in the morning until after school hours,” said Julie Thompson.

The students will have a full day of learning while being socially distanced within after-school care areas like the gym or cafeteria.

Thompson says if a learner is participating in the in-school learning option this year, and not enrolled in after-school or before-school care, the parents will have to make plans for their children to virtually learn outside of school.

When it comes to how long a code red will last, Thompson says it is up to Superintendent Bob Thomas.

During the red days, schools will still provide them lunch for children involved in both styles of learning.

The Executive Director of Elementary says says virtual learners can pick up lunches for the week on Mondays and Wednesdays.

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