Tennessee Valley school systems planning ahead in case of coronavirus closure

Coronavirus

School books on desk, education concept

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School officials throughout the Tennessee Valley are working on plans in case they need to close due to a COVID-19 outbreak.

We have more than two dozen school districts across 10 counties in north Alabama that we are following for you.

The state of Alabama has not yet declared a state of emergency, but in the states that have, school was not canceled statewide.

Instead, each district made its own decision based on the presence of COVID-19 in its community.

After speaking to superintendents across the area, we believe the same protocol will be followed here.

Most local school systems say in an extended closure that students would complete work online or teachers would send home weeks of work on paper.

Here's what some districts are telling us:

  • Huntsville City Schools will do a combination of the two. The students that have access to district-issued laptops will complete coursework online. Students with limited internet access will receive hard copy materials.
  • Madison City Schools will do everything online and will provide electronic devices and portable wi-fi hot spots for families that don't have access at home.
  • Limestone County and Franklin County Schools say teachers have at least two weeks of classwork ready to go and printed out on paper to send home with students.
  • Lawrence County Schools will also do a combination of online course work and paper copies depending on what each student needs.
  • Albertville City Schools says it is customizing plans catered for different grades and students will be able to access assignments online.
  • Morgan County Schools is a 1:1 system meaning they have digital devices for every student. Students will have options like virtual lessons, lessons via social media, and virtual office hours for teachers.

The state board of education met Thursday morning and they say Alabama K-12 school employees who test positive for the coronavirus or who have a dependent who tests positive will be asked to stay home for 14 days and will not be charged sick leave.

Interactive: Coronavirus Timeline

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