Williamsville parents given opportunity to question district on reopening plan

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WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) — Wednesday was the first opportunity Williamsville parents were able to directly ask school district leaders questions on their reopening plan.

Superintendent Scott Martzloff opened the district’s first discussion session by outlining how students can expect to learn this fall.

“With having to do social distancing, there’s no way we can have all of our students in class at the same time and keep people socially distant,” he explained.

Because of this, the district will be using the hybrid learning model. Students will be divided up into four groups. The first group, “Group A,” are students with last names A through L, and will attend classes in-person Monday and Tuesday. “Group B” are students with last names M through Z and will attend classes in-person Thursday and Friday. “Group C” will attend in-person classes every day except Wednesday, and “Group D” are students in self-contained classes that will attend in-person classes every day.

Parents also have the option of keeping their child home for virtual-only learning.

Those who participated on Wednesday’s Zoom call had many concerns regarding their child’s safety, including issues surrounding temperature-taking, which the district said will be up to parents at home.

As part of the reopening process, the district also put together a committee made up of administrators, teachers and parents. News 4 spoke with one committee member who said she understands how people could think the plan was unclear, but the decision-making process was a fluid situation.

“I know that it does not address hardly anything, anywhere close to what people want to address, but one of the things we learned sitting in the committee was [that] the facts kept changing, and it was impossible to anticipate every possible avenue, every possible situation,” said Michelle McKinstry.

A spokesperson for Williamsville Central School District told News 4 district leaders will use the feedback from discussions sessions to evaluate reopening plans.

The district has four more community Zoom meetings scheduled, three of which will be organized by school-level:

  • Elementary schools – Monday, Aug. 17 at 6 p.m.
  • Middle Schools – Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 6 p.m.
  • High Schools – Wednesday, Aug. 19 at 6 p.m.
  • Faculty & staff – Thursday, Aug. 20 at 6 p.m.

Marlee Tuskes is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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