Davison Community Schools delays start of new school year until after Labor Day

Published: Aug. 11, 2020 at 1:05 PM EDT
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DAVISON, Mich. (WJRT) - Davison Community Schools won’t be starting their new school year on Monday as originally planned.

The district will wait until Sept. 8 after Labor Day to start the school year amid a shift to online learning and continued concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

An order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extended last Friday requires anyone with coronavirus symptoms and everyone who was near them for 15 minutes or more to self-quarantine for 14 days -- or until they get a coronavirus test with negative results.

Superintendent Kevin Brown said the order is complicating plans for the start of the school year.

In addition, about 1,100 Davison students have signed up for online learning and 21 teachers from kindergarten through sixth grade have been reassigned to work with them. The district is hiring more staff to reduce class sizes, which will allow for better social distancing in classrooms.

The district’s technology team is busy preparing more than 2,500 new computers purchased with federal CARES Act funding. Because those won’t be available until late September or October, other existing computers are being upgraded and refurbished so they can be distributed to students.

“This has proven to be a monumental task, as many of these devices are in need of software upgrades and having them ready by August 17 may not be feasible,” Brown said in a statement.

Meanwhile, administrators are juggling student schedules to reduce the amount of face-to-face instruction during the coronavirus pandemic. At Davison High School alone, 1,700 students are getting new class schedules that include four hours of classroom time and two hours of remote learning per day.

“Despite our best efforts and intentions to welcome students and staff back to school on August 17, I don’t see how we can do that right now,” Brown said.

Davison parents are asked to decide by noon on Friday whether to enroll their students in entirely remote classes or some in-person classes and register online.

Copyright 2020 WJRT. All rights reserved.

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