Superintendent of Houston County Schools says schools will return to normal on August 20

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HOUSTON COUNTY, Ala. (WDHN) — Come August 20, students will be walking into Houston County District schools like every other year, but a few changes will be in store.

“I foresee that the first day of school being like any other first day of school, except I foresee a lot of caution especially with our younger students,” said Houston County Schools Superintendent David Sewell. “I would be extremely apprehensive about sending them back to school, but I know most parents are ready for their children to be back in school and the students are excited.”

School will return back to normal, including extracurricular activities such as sports and band. At this time, students will not be temperature checked but teachers will be every morning.

“Some of our schools have 1,000 students, it’d be impossible for the lead nurse to take everyone’s temperature, so we will see what the state recommends,” Sewell said.

Students will have the option to return to school in a face-to-face session, a virtual session, or a blended session. The virtual session is funded by the State of Alabama and is offered to all schools across the state. In addition, each school district has the option to use this system and, according to Sewell, Houston County Schools will.

“The Alabama State of Education partnered with PowerSchool and PowerSchool has an LMS, it’s called Schoology,” said District Assessment and Accountability Supervisor, Cas Haddock.

Schoology will have a username and password login that will allow students and teachers to interact electronically.

“It will allow us to pull in content for various core subjects, through pre-k to the best of my knowledge 12th grade,” Haddock explained

Both brick and mortar school sessions as well as online sessions will be ready and available come August 20.

“With all the changes and apprehensions, it’ll be different,” Sewell said. “But it will be the same and different at the same time.”

Teachers will return to work on August 10 and 11 and will have a week to prepare for their students’ arrival.

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