The Hamilton County Schools team has closely tracked the data over the break, and due to the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases in the community, it was announced Monday afternoon that all grade levels (K-12) will transition to a Phase 2 schedule.
That will begin next Monday and continue through Dec. 18.
Grades 9-12 will continue on the same A/B hybrid learning schedule they are following this week, and K-8 students will transition to the hybrid schedule next Monday.
The district will continue to evaluate data and the community health situation and communicate plans for the second semester on Friday, Dec. 18, officials said.
There are 55 students with active cases - up by 24 from a report earlier in the day.
There are 47 employees with active cases. Another 79 staffers are awaiting test results.
For the students there are 928 active close contacts - up from 835 listed earlier in the day. For employees, it is 94 close contacts - up from 85.
Monday was the first day for the high schools to be on the hybrid A/B schedule, while K-8 continued with in-person school for all students.
To view the latest Phase Tracker, visit www.hcde.org/reentryplan.
Phase 2 follows a hybrid learning schedule, allowing half-capacity with students grouped into an A-cohort or B-cohort. The schedule will be a full five-day school week for all students with two days on campus and three days learning remotely. During this schedule, teachers and staff report to the school building every day, including remote learning days.
Friday, Dec. 18, was previously approved by the Hamilton County School Board to be an asynchronous remote learning day for students. This day will remain a remote learning day for all students and reporting to the building will be optional for staff.
The students in A-group will attend school on campus on Mondays and Tuesdays, and the B group will attend school on campus on Thursdays and Fridays. Both the A-group and B-group will participate in remote learning on Wednesdays. The other two days that students are not on campus each week, they will also participate in remote learning. The Hamilton County Schools opening schedule followed the same A/B cohort pattern. Students will remain in the same cohort they were assigned to at the beginning of the school year. On the Phase 2 schedule, some exceptional education and ESL students will attend a half-day on Wednesday as previously outlined in the HCS Reentry Plan.
Officials said, "The district knows the Phase 2 schedule can present challenges for families including internet access, childcare, and learning support. Hamilton County Schools has partnered with organizations across our community to provide resources for families who may need more support in a remote learning environment."
- Virtual Learning Centers- The district has partnered with organizations throughout Hamilton County to establish Virtual Learning Centers. These centers offer an in-person environment for students to gather in small groups, under the supervision of qualified adults (volunteer or staff), to engage in remote learning. There are Virtual Learning Centers currently operating to support HCS at Home families, and there are more centers being added during Phase 2 to provide additional support for in-person students now learning remotely. Education Well-Check services are also available for students who meet certain criteria. This service provides a Virtual Success Coach for remote learning students who are disengaged or struggling academically.
- HCS EdConnect Powered by EPB- Hamilton County Schools has joined with EPB of Chattanooga to offer high-speed internet services at no cost to families who receive free-or-reduced lunch. To sign up for HCS EdConnect, eligible families can call their child’s school to opt-in to the service. After contacting the school to qualify, families must also contact EPB to schedule internet installation.
- Parent Toolkit- To support families with virtual learning, the district has created a Parent Toolkit on our website that includes technology tips, our family resource center, and a guide to our Parent University courses.
- School Age-Child Care- A limited number of School-Age Child Care sites will be open to provide support for families. Visitour websiteto learn more.