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KCPS sets Nov. 9 as 'target date' to begin in-person learning

Posted at 10:05 PM, Sep 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-23 23:51:41-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City, Missouri, Public School District set tentative plans to begin returning students to the classroom.

The district announced Wednesday night during its Board of Directors meeting that a target date of Nov. 9 had been set – if not sooner.

Superintendent Mark Bedell highlighted that as COVID-19 cases have trended down in Jackson County, though community spread remains at 12.4%.

KCPS Phases

Community spread, according to the district's gating criteria, needs to be below 10% before in-person learning can resume.

A timeline for what a return to the classroom would look like, and what the phase-in process would entail, is still being planned. In the meantime, Bedell has been visiting classrooms, getting feedback from teachers to students to custodians.

“When I go in and I visit teachers and I look at how much these teachers care, and I walk into the room of a 33-year vet and that teacher breaks down crying in front of me because, you know, her mentality is, 'I’m an old school teacher [and] this technology piece is kind of difficult for me, but I feel like I’m letting my kids down,' and I think that’s what keeps me up at night,” Bedell said.

The district also is working on a COVID-19 dashboard to share case information with parents throughout the academic year.

“Adhering to the science and making sure that the data is telling us what we need to do – we also recognize that there are things we could do on a smaller scale that may allow for us to get some of our kids in the schools,” Bedell said.