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Fredonia sets first day, no firm model

Fredonia schools Interim Superintendent Dr. Colleen Taggerty holds a face shield that will be provided to each and adult and student when school opens.

OBSERVER Staff Report

Fredonia Central School will be opening its school year on Tuesday, Sept. 8. What model the district will be using, however, has not been determined.

That was the message from Interim Superintendent Dr. Colleen Taggerty during one of the three Facebook live sessions that allowed for comments and questions for parents and those viewing. The sessions are part of state Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s policy of electronically meeting with district stakeholders regarding a potential return to buildings.

“We’re working diligently to bring forth our opening model as soon as possible,” Taggerty said. “There are still questions the district needs to address before final decisions can be made. Some of those questions focus on reopening plans, if we have to shutdown and how that may work, and transportation.”

There are three options to reopening the district continues to decide on: in-person, a hybrid model of in-person and remote and all remote. Taggerty did not indicate when a decision will be made, but she did say the district is still in the process of determining how it will open.

Besides the district’s start date, there are two other points Taggerty emphasized. Everyone will wear a face mask and social distancing will be enforced. She also said face shields will be made available, one for every student and adult.

Fredonia Central Schools also has a shortage of computers for an online model. Taggarty did say 500 Chrome books are on order.

As for the high school and middle school, leaders appear to be looking at a similar plan. Darren Paschke, high school principal, noted that in-person instruction will take place for the first half of the alphabet on Sept. 8, there will be no school Sept. 9 and in-person instruction will be for the second half of the alphabet on Sept. 10.

An in-service day for staff will be Sept. 11.

Moving forward, high school and middle school students could follow a schedule with the first half of alphabet students in school Monday and Tuesday with remote learning Thursday and Friday. The second half would follow the opposite schedule with Wednesday being totally remote for a day of “deep cleaning.”

“All of our decisions have been based on safety first,” Paschke said. “Obviously academics are very important, but the safety of our staff and students is utmost.”

Taggerty took questions, but could not give definite answers to many of those posed. She did, however, say the school would be taking the temperature of each student who attends that day.

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