Fulton, DeKalb school districts to start the New Year online-only

Several metro Atlanta schools are delaying a return to in-person classes after winter break. (file photo)

Several metro Atlanta schools are delaying a return to in-person classes after winter break. (file photo)

DeKalb County Public Schools and Fulton County Schools on Friday announced that they will start classes online when students return from winter break next week.

They join Clayton County Schools and Rockdale County Public Schools in pushing back the return to in-person classes amid record-breaking reports of coronavirus infections in Georgia.

On Friday, the state reported 24,320 new confirmed and probable coronavirus infections. A daily earlier, the state set a record with with more than 25,000 new or likely cases.

“Please remember COVID-19 is an ever-changing situation, one we cannot predict,” said a statement from Fulton County Schools. “We implore our community do all they can to be safe. We strongly encourage people to get vaccinated.”

In mid-December, many metro Atlanta school districts reported a spike in coronavirus cases among students and staff. Atlanta Public Schools, Fulton County Schools and Gwinnett County Public Schools were among districts that reported their highest numbers in weeks.

Fourteen schools districts across metro Atlanta recorded more than 40,000 COVID-19 cases since the school year began in August. In late December, omicron surge was is hitting metro Atlanta the hardest in the state.

Remote learning begins on Tuesday in Fulton County Schools. Fulton plays to return to face-to-face instruction on Jan. 10. Masks will be required from Jan. 10 through Jan. 21.

DeKalb will start remote learning on Wednesday. Parents and guardians will be allowed to come to schools on Monday and Tuesday to pick up laptops other other devices for students who didn’t bring them home over winter break. Students will also return to in-person learning on Jan. 10.

Atlanta Public Schools said in a statement Friday that the district will reopen Monday with mandatory surveillance testing for all employees. In-person classes resume for students on Tuesday.

“We will continue with our strict COVID-19 mitigation protocols, which include mandatory testing twice a week for employees, voluntary testing for students, and mandatory masks for everyone inside an APS school or office building,” the APS statement said.

Clayton County Schools said Thursday that increasing COVID-19 infections in the county has led it to switch to online learning for all students through Jan. 7. Students will return to school buildings on Jan. 10.

“We have to act with caution and encourage families to participate in the vaccination and testing opportunities available to ensure we can have school with minimal disruptions to the learning process,” Superintendent Morcease Beasley said in a statement.

Several metro Atlanta colleges and university have also announced they are beginning the spring semester online. They include: Agnes Scott College, Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College.


Metro Atlanta school districts switching to online classes

Atlanta Public Schools

Clayton County Schools

DeKalb County Public School

Fulton County Schools

Rockdale County Public Schools