Back to school

Back to school

Beitel Elementary School principal Loren Engel clears the crosswalk for students Friday morning in Laramie.

If anyone in Albany County School District No. 1 had a stressful summer, it was Superintendent Jubal Yennie.Like other school superintendents, Yennie is the one who captains the ship that is the local school district. He is the one who recommends certain actions to the board. He is the one people call when trouble is happening.

So, it’s been a long month for Yennie and the rest of the ACSD No. 1 employees as they’ve prepared for the first day of school.

Technically, school began Wednesday with half-days for ACSD No. 1 students, but the first full day of classes will officially begin Monday.

Yennie admitted there were a few hiccups during the distribution process, but felt optimistic about the first few weeks of classes.

“We’ll have some other things to work out, especially over the next week, but all of our safety and security systems seem to be working well,” Yennie told the Boomerang.

He felt using the three half-days was the best route, giving all of the students, staff and faculty to figure out any hurdles and prepare for the first full week of classes.

All of the students received Chromebooks and any students opting to do classroom-based virtual instruction will receive a hotspot to use the internet at home.

Yennie said more than 500 students have opted to do classroom-based virtual instruction instead of in-person learning. With this model, students will attend either synchronous classes multiple times a week or asynchronously, where they will have to log in and do coursework by a certain time every week.

All of the elementary schools, Whiting High and Rock River School will attend classes in person on a typical schedule. All of the district’s classrooms are capped at 17 students.

All of the district’s middle and secondary schools will attend classes on an A/B basis, meaning they will have a rotating schedule, with some groups attending in-person classes on Mondays and Wednesdays and the others going on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Friday mornings will be reserved as a time for teachers to assist students.

The ACSD No. 1 board will reexamine the current health situation and public health orders at its Oct. 14 meeting.

Yennie believes the district is ready for cases of the coronavirus potentially popping up over the next few weeks (not unlike cases in Riverton and Torrington), but also knows there are hurdles one can’t ever be prepared for.

“You’re never totally ready, because the unknown is always there,” he said. “We’re working hard to socially distance, but it’s an individual, case-by-case basis. But I have confidence we will take care of students, families and anyone people come into close contact with.”

One of the major logistical issues the district will work out next week is how lunch will be served to everyone in the respective district buildings, Yennie said. He added that some of the district’s athletic teams are traveling this weekend, which will help school officials figure out traveling details over the next school quarter.

“I don’t really anticipate anything different for next week,” Yennie said. “Our processes have been in good shape, but I expect we will respond to a lot of questions about health screenings, potential positive COVID cases and contact tracing. We’re making every effort to keep COVID out of our buildings.”

Ellen Fike is a freelance writer living in Cheyenne. She can be reached at elfylucille@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter at @EllenLFike.{/div}

(1) comment

TheReplacement

Meanwhile in Sweden, where children go to school year round, schools never closed. Also, Sweden is a No Mask country as they follow the science which indicates that masks are worthless and children aren't in danger. On the other hand, in the U.S. we listen to corrupt medical bureaucrats, politicians and fear driven media outlets.

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