Cleveland Metropolitan School District will be online only for at least first 9 weeks

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CLEVELAND (WJW) — The Cleveland Metropolitan School District will begin the school year on August 24 in a virtual environment.

CMSD CEO Eric Gordon made the announcement Friday morning.

On a call with reporters, Gordon said that since Cuyahoga County remains at a Level 3 county for increasing cases of Covid-19, the district felt this would be the best way to help keep children and staff members safe. Online-only learning will happen for at least the first nine weeks of the school year, then the district will re-evaluate.

“We surveyed our parents and caregivers and educators and two thirds of our parents and caregivers said they were very concerned or only slightly comfortable at returning to school while only 14 percent said they were comfortable returning to school; and, among our educators were nearly the same 63 percent were very uncomfortable, and only 16 percent comfortable,” Gordon said.

He says the district will soon begin training for teachers to work in a virtual environment.
They will also begin to work with families to find out what their needs are — not only if they need computers or WiFi access but things like child care and meals for children.

Gordon says they will continue to distribute food to children as they’ve done for the spring and summer, but they will also seek to step up.

Gordon says the plan will remain flexible and that if conditions warrant they will return children to classrooms in schools that have been arranged to help with social distancing, but if Covid-19 continues to spread, Gordon says they’ll be ready to conduct the whole year remotely, if necessary. 

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