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Caldwell School District announces plans for reopening in the fall

As of now, the district is planning on a blended learning model in which students will spend part of the week in class and part of the week online.

CALDWELL, Idaho — School districts across the country are releasing their reopening plans for school in the fall. 

We have highlighted several locally, and are now learning about the plan for the Caldwell School District and its 6,000 students.

Allison Westfall, the district's communication director tells KTVB that officials have come up with multiple color-coded contingency plans - green, yellow, and red (most severe) - depending on coronavirus conditions.

"When school was going to start was August 17th, and we made the recommendation to move to the 27th and 28th and move forward with the yellow plan, and that's one of the most difficult parts - is the blended learning model," Westfall said. "Students come to school some days of the week and learn online other days."

Secondary students, or middle and high school students, would go to school two days a week and have a common digital day.

"Elementary students, they would go every day for a half-day except Wednesday," Westfall explained. "So that's Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. Either they're an afternoon kiddo or a morning one and that Wednesday is a digital day."

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According to Westfall, it's important to have the younger students in school more as they're learning to read and tackle math. Plus, the split shift allows for good physical distancing.

The district is now working to get schedules out to parents as quickly as possible.

"It's a very different model so parents are eager for that information," Westfall said. "We're asking for their patience. One of the reasons we pushed out the start of school was to figure out bus routes, schedules to be figured out, all of that, and as soon as we have it we'll make it available for parents."

Masks will be required by students and staff in school. All students will be given an iPad or Chromebook, depending on their age, for the digital days. The district has Internet hotspots available for families but admits access will still be a challenge for some.

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