District 95 approves hybrid of in-person and at-home learning

  • Lake Zurich High School students will spend about half their school days at home under a hybrid learning plan unanimously approved by the District 95 board.

      Lake Zurich High School students will spend about half their school days at home under a hybrid learning plan unanimously approved by the District 95 board. Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 7/30/2020 6:20 PM

Lake Zurich Unit District 95 school officials are moving forward with back-to-school plans that call for a hybrid of in-person and at-home learning despite the recent outbreak of 73 COVID-19 cases in the Lake Zurich area.

Under the plan approved unanimously by the board Tuesday, elementary school students will attend school either in the morning or afternoon and spend the other half of the day using technology from home. Middle and high school students will attend in person every other day and learn from home the other days.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

School Board President Scott McConnell acknowledged that the current COVID-19 trend was bad, but he voiced support for the hybrid model.

"I can't sit here and tell the community on July 29 that we're not going to try to get your children in school," McConnell said at the special meeting Tuesday night, which was held in the Lake Zurich High School Performing Arts Center.

McConnell said the district could revert to all e-learning if safety concerns arise.

Safety protocols include mandating masks, limiting gatherings to 50 people, maintaining social distance and screening everyone who enters a district school for COVID-19 symptoms, according to the district website. In addition, there will be enhanced cleaning and disinfecting procedures.

Earlier this week, health department officials said 73 people have tested positive for COVID-19 as part of the Lake Zurich-area outbreak that led to the cancellation of sports camps at Lake Zurich High School in early July.

In the news release announcing the hybrid class model, district officials reminded members of the community that their actions -- from wearing masks to maintaining social distancing -- will help slow the spread of COVID-19 and help make in-person classes possible.

E-learning classes are scheduled to begin for every student in the district on Aug. 24, with the beginning of in-person classes staggered by grade level. In-person start dates are: special education on Aug. 24, kindergarten through second grade on Sept. 8, third through sixth on Sept. 14; seventh through ninth on Sept. 28 and high school sophomores through seniors on Oct. 5.

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