Grand Island students will have more space on the bus and plastic barriers in class

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GRAND ISLAND, NY (WIVB) The first day in class for some students in the Grand Island Central School District is Wednesday, September 9, but there is a lot of information to get out to parents between now and then.

“Our first parent forum is Thursday,”said Grand Island School superintendent Dr. Brian Graham, who intends to post the answers to some of the most common parent questions he’s received already. “Parents want to know more information about a hybrid, parents want to know more information if they choose to be 100% virtual plan. Parents want to know when can we evaluate the circumstances to open up to five days of instruction.”

Dr. Graham says it will depend on guidance from NY state about distancing and the infection rate to determine whether kids would eventually come in 5 days a week, but for now the plan is to begin September 9th with a Hybrid schedule. “Which is probably best described as an A-B cohort coming in on Monday-Tuesday. Wednesday everybody’s home, and that A-B cohort comes in on Thursday-Friday.”

Each desk will have an L-shaped plastic barrier, according to Dr. Graham. “So adding the plastic barriers and keeping six feet of distance will allow for scheduled mask-breaks as appropriate.”

“Last year, they averaged about 40 students on each Grand Island school bus. This year, they believe the average will be about 11 students. That’s because not only are they bringing in only half of the students on a given day but they’re also scattering the arrival times.

It is the current plan , which still could be adjusted after teacher and parent input, and that’s exactly the way the state wants it to unfold for each district this month, according to Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul. “What we’ve done is empowered the school districts to meet our very high standards, but they know what they can handle, they know how many students they have , how many buildings they have, they know what their capability is for disinfecting spaces and whether they need an extra day to do it or want to do it at the end of a school day. So this is when we’re gonna see each school district shine.”

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