Clayton County Schools mulling pushing opening day back a week

The Clayton County Board of Education to consider Monday whether to push the first day of school back a week.
Caption
The Clayton County Board of Education to consider Monday whether to push the first day of school back a week.

Clayton County Schools is eyeing a change in its opening date for the 2020-2021 school year.

Superintendent Morcease Beasley on Thursday said the district’s board of education will have a called meeting at 6 p.m. Monday to address updates to the school calendar.

“We will share reopening updates and two recommendations to change first day of school for students to August 10 to give teachers extra time to prepare for the second recommendation to open using the virtual option,” he wrote on the school system’s Facebook page.

Clayton students are currently scheduled to return to class Aug. 3.

The note comes two days after Beasley said in a YouTube video that the district is leaning heavily toward a virtual-only opening next month because of the soaring coronavirus infections.

Parents surveyed on four opening options -- virtual-only, traditional daily classes, dividing students into smaller daily class groups or a blend of strategies -- overwhelming chose the virtual route.

“For the most part our parents commented that they were not comfortable with sending students back to school, even with safety guidelines as long as the data suggests that the virus transmission is still increasing,” Beasley said during the YouTube video. “Our employees responded similarly.”

Clayton isn't the only district that has given its opening date a second look. Fayette County's first day will be Aug. 10 instead of Aug. 3 as originally planned. Gwinnett County will begin Aug. 12 instead of Aug. 5.