State approves Sumter School District, Clarendon 2 reopening plans

Sumter district will re-evaluate every 2 weeks, based on COVID-19 rates, whether it can begin a hybrid model


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The state Department of Education approved Sumter School District's virtual reopening plan Monday contingent upon the district re-evaluating an in-person option every two weeks, and the district has agreed it will do so.

Shelly Galloway, the district's executive director of communication and community engagement, confirmed the details Monday afternoon following a state department news release.

Moving forward, Sumter's plan is to reopen in a fully virtual, online capacity on Friday, Aug. 28.

Based on the state agency's recommendation, every two weeks, district administration will re-evaluate if it can phase in a hybrid model option, depending on local COVID-19 incidence rates and safety. That hybrid model will consist of two days of face-to-face instruction a week for all students with a blend of online instruction on other days during the week.

In the district's submitted reopening plan to the state, it proposed beginning the school year online and re-evaluating every 30 days if it could phase in the hybrid model.

The district has said its desire is also to shift fully to regular classroom attendance when it is feasible and safe.

Clarendon School District Two's reopening plan was also approved by the state Monday with an online start date for instruction of Monday, Aug. 17.

Beginning Monday, Sept. 14, the Manning-based district will offer one day of in-person instruction a week for all students.

The two districts were among the final 14 systems to have reopening plans approved by the state department.

Even when hybrid models are implemented by districts, public school students across the state have the option of remaining in full virtual instruction throughout the school year, given the coronavirus pandemic.