Students will return to in-person classes on Tuesday, for the first time since March 17, when Chillicothe R-II Schools closed district buildings due to COVID-19.

Staff has been attending meetings and are preparing for a school year, that Wiebers and educational leaders across the state and county admit, will be much different than any school year before, as COVID-19 numbers continue to rise in some areas.

“District staff have been busy preparing for the upcoming school year. This year will look much different than any year in the past. Some of our students will be receiving their education in our school buildings and others will be learning from home. Those in our buildings will need to wear masks when social distancing cannot be guaranteed. Safety devices and cleaning supplies have been distributed to our staff so a safe learning environment can be possible for our students and staff,” Wiebers said. “As the district strives to provide the best classroom instruction possible, we will also take the task of keeping our students safe. The district's return to learn plan is posted on the school website and parents are invited to contact building principals or the district office with questions.”

The district’s website, https://www.chillicotheschools.org/ has up-to-date information regarding COVID-19, and other school-related information. The school’s re-entry plan and other COVID-19 specific information can be found at https://www.chillicotheschools.org/article/275337?org=chillicothe-r-ii.

Wiebers said as in years past local and social media will have any information regarding any sudden changes to the school day, or any possible school closures.

“It will be very similar to weather days, but this year, instruction will still occur when students are not in the buildings,” he said.

As before the start of any school year, it is important for students, and parents, to make sure to ease into a school schedule.

“It is important that families start working with their children to prepare them for the beginning of the school year. Find acceptable bedtimes and start waking children earlier in the morning so they are prepared for bus rides, walks or parent transportation,” Wiebers said, noting that if families are struggling, they should reach out to their student’s building counseling department for assistance.

In a previous interview with the C-T, Wiebers noted at-home screening and needed precautions for the health and well being of all students and staff.

Parents have been given a list of symptoms, and each day they should make sure they evaluate their students before sending them to school.

The re-entry plan states that if a child shows symptoms the child should be kept at home until they are symptom-free for 48 hours, or a confirmation of a negative COVID test has been acquired.

If a child tests positive for COVID, parents should notify the school building immediately.

“Any student who tests positive for COVID-19 or indicates that they have been in close contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 within the last two weeks will need to contact Livingston County Health Center and follow their guidance for isolation and quarantine. Any student required to isolate or quarantine per Livingston County Health Center can only report back to school once they are asymptomatic and after they provide medical documentation to their school administrator (who will share this with the school nurse) that stipulates that they are cleared to return to school.”