Opp Elementary, Middle to resume regular schedule

Published 6:16 pm Tuesday, September 1, 2020

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Encouraging COVID-19 numbers mean Opp students will be returning to the classroom soon.

Opp City Schools will transition to full-time instruction for Opp Elementary and Opp Middle School students, effective Sept. 8.

School officials say this decision stems from the Alabama Department of Public Health’s Back to School Toolkit and Covington County’s “low risk” on ADPH Risk Indicator Dashboard.

“When we started looking at the numbers, the rate of transmission on the ADPH Risk Indicator Dashboard for Covington County has stayed at ‘low risk,’ Superintendent Michael Smithart said. “We know that the best thing for our kids is to have them in school full time. We felt like with some changes, we could allow our kids back in school.”

Smithart said elementary and middle school time periods are important to teach foundational skills.

“That is why we are only doing elementary and middle school,” Smithart said. “We want that to be the focus right now.”

Looking forward to the year, Smithart said he is excited to have a little bit of normalcy.

“When we return to full capacity, they get to be around all of their friends,” Smithart said. “There’s a lot of benefit to that. We are just excited to have as regular as a school year that we can have.”

Students will be required to wear masks at all times and social distance “to the greatest possible extent.”

Buses will run normal routes.