Overview: Plans for school to return in the fall

July 21, 2020 /

School districts across Kern County have begun to roll out their plans for school in the fall.

Some districts, like Bakersfield City School District, have decided to stick with the distance learning, while others, like Fairfax School District, have decided on a hybrid model.

“We believe coming to school every day, participation in school activities, having social interactions with peers, and creating meaningful connections with teachers and staff optimizes student’s success, academically and socially-emotionally,” said Rosedale Union School District Superintendent Sue Lemon in a letter.

Kern Sol News has put together an overview of what different local school districts have decided.

Rosedale Union School District said it prefers a traditional model for returning to school in the fall; however, the district is allowing parents to decide which model (online, hybrid, or face-to-face instruction) they want to take part in. Rosedale’s survey results show that 68 percent of families surveyed said they want traditional in school instruction, while 24 percent surveyed said  blended instruction would be preferred, and 8 percent desired full-time virtual learning. Not all options will be available at all schools or grade levels and options are contingent upon enrollment. Transportation will be limited due to social distancing guidelines. Rosedale Union School District has planned to resume instruction on August 13th, however because of the current circumstances that may change. Click here to view the offerings for each grade level.

The Kern High School District will start the school year with a distance learning model, with a plan to incrementally phase in a hybrid model by the end of the first quarter on Oct. 9. At the end of the first quarter, the District anticipates incrementally transitioning to a hybrid learning model, consisting of students attending school in person one or two days a week, and continuing with distance learning for the remainder of the week. Additional Chromebooks and WiFi hotspots have been ordered to facilitate this process. You can find more information here.

The Fairfax School District had also announced announced its reopening plan, comprised of focus areas that details parent options for education for the first nine weeks of the 2020-21 school year, as well as reviewing nutrition, transportation, COVID-19 mitigation processes such as sanitation, social distancing, and mask requirements.  The Re-opening plan is divided into three phases.  1) Substantial COVID-19 Spread, 2) Moderate/Minimal COVID-19 Spread, and 3) No COVID-19 Spread.  As of July 12, 2020, according to Kern County Public Health and the State of California, the plan is operating under Phase 2 – Moderate/Minimal Spread. Dependent upon the COVID-19 virus, Fairfax schools may move back to Phase 1 or to Phase 3 accordingly. The phase 2 plan options include: Four day per week on-campus learning schedule;  Hybrid A/B schedule; and a Full Distance Learning schedule. Find more information on Fairfax’s plan here.

The McFarland Unified School District will reopen the school year with face-to-face instruction in phases. The District will physically open Aug. 5 with Kindergarten and First Grade cohorts. The rest of the students will continue with distance learning until the next phases open.

McFarland’s stages of reopening

There are four total phases for physically reopening all of the schools in the District. While there are targeted dates for opening new phases, the District has the ability to shift depending on the level of COVID-19 cases, county health guidelines, and other safety measures, according to a news release. To learn more about the phased reopening of McFarland schools, visit mcfarlandusd.org.

The Bakersfield City School District has decided to begin the school year with a distance learning model. The district will remain in a distance learning model for the first quarter. “Our board believes the best place for our students during this challenging and uncertain time is in the classroom…however as much as we want students back in school we cannot do so until it is safe for all,” the district said in a letter.