FCPS planning to extend winter break due to COVID-19

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Fayette County students might start next semester three days later than planned.(WDKY)

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WDKY) – Fayette County students might start next semester three days later than planned.

Fayette County school leaders are discussing changes to the upcoming semester. Now, they’re planning to have students return on January 7 as opposed to January 4.

“I think there are benefits to a mid-week start as it’s really difficult to go full force right off the bat,” said Stephanie Spires, Fayette Co. Board of Education chairman.

But will students return in person or online?

“It is far too early at this point to decide what we’re going to do as far as January,” Spires said. “But it is not too late for the community to make it a priority to return to school in January.”

Spires says the decision will depend on COVID-19. Numbers are spiking in Fayette County. The district plans to use the state’s color-coded zoning system as guidance.

“It depends on what the case spread is and what the case clusters are,” Spires said. “For example, if all the cases are in one assisted living facility, it might be possible that our students can be in the classroom.”

But the ultimate decision will be up to interim Superintendent Marlene Helm. She’s stepping in for Manny Caulk who’s on medical leave.

Spires, a mother of four, says the district is asking for patience as leaders determine the best course of action.

“I want to stress to parents, I know this is a really anxious time. It’s scary. I’m scared too. I am tired of my four children and would love to see them in school,” Spires said. “At the same time, as someone with a compromised immune system, I’m scared of what that may look like for our family.”

District leaders will discuss next semester’s start date on Monday. They will discuss more plans for the upcoming semester on December 14.

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