DC schools plan for 5-day a week in-person learning

D.C. Public Schools said it plans to welcome all students back for five-day a week in-person learning when the 2021-2022 school year begins on Aug. 30.

Schools Chancellor Lewis Ferebee said DCPS isn’t requiring COVID-19 vaccinations at this time, but for other vaccinations, he said, “it’s critical that families ensure there’s a clear immunization record for all of our students to participate in learning next school year.”

Ferebee, who spoke during a telephone town hall with community members on Wednesday, said “if you want to see our students back in school, if you believe this is important, one of the most important things that we can do together collectively as a community is to get as many people vaccinated as possible.”

Promising a “limited virtual offering” for students and their families who aren’t yet ready to return to classrooms when the new school year begins, Ferebee said more details would be made available in the coming weeks.

DCPS said it will provide before- and after-care next school year, adding that the school system is “working with our providers to stand it up.”

The school system said it received $191 million in federal relief funds to support the full reopening of schools and has spent $24 million in HVAC enhancements across all of its schools.

DCPS said all schools will receive a “deep cleaning” before Aug. 30 and schools will continue to receive daily “enhanced cleaning” and “deep cleansing,” per recommendations from D.C.’s health department.

General PPE supplies, such as masks will be offered for students and staff, with additional PPE supplies available for “staff, who are in closer interaction with students and staff,” according to DCPS.

School building reopening plans and readiness checklists were released for all DCPS campuses.

Enrollment for the new school year is underway on the DCPS website.

Another town hall with Ferebee will be held on Wednesday.

Matt Small

Matt joined WTOP News at the start of 2020, after contributing to Washington’s top news outlet as an Associated Press journalist for nearly 18 years.

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