At a press conference this afternoon Governor Ned Lamont and Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona announced reopening guidelines for schools that raise many questions and concerns for educators and parents. The guidelines include no class size caps, staggered schedules, or requirements for COVID-19 testing.
“The reopen plan that we’re asking all districts to complete must include plans to bring all students in daily given health trends in Connecticut,” Cardona said.
Other aspects of the plan announced today include
- cohorting students when possible, especially in grades K-8,
- reconfiguring auditoriums, gymnasiums, and other potential classroom space where necessary and possible,
- operating school buses close to capacity with heightened health and safety protocols,
- expecting all students and staff to wear a protective face covering or face mask that completely covers the nose and mouth when inside the school building,
- developing robust monitoring and containment protocols and plans for school closures should community transmission rates increase.
In a joint statement CEA and AFT Connecticut wrote, “Governor Lamont’s plan is short on specifics and doesn’t address some of the most pressing issues associated with reopening our buildings this fall. The new plan raises many concerns and leaves dozens of unanswered questions regarding how schools will operate in a COVID-19 world. Schools should not represent exceptions to widespread standards of health and safety. Educators and school staff deserve the kinds of standard protections from infection that have become familiar in every workplace across the state.” Read more