Maury County's students return to classroom after two-day transition to remote learning

·2 min read
Maury County Public Schools buses sit at the school district’s garage on Tuesday Nov. 29, 2016.
Maury County Public Schools buses sit at the school district’s garage on Tuesday Nov. 29, 2016.

Students at Maury County Public Schools will return to the classroom Tuesday, following a district-wide pivot to remote learning.

The school district's executive team met Monday afternoon and the decision was made for the entire school district to return to its regularly scheduled classes, according to a spokesperson for the district.

The transition to remote learning began last Friday after the Tennessee Department of Education granted MCPS and at least seven other schools permission to transition each of the requesting school campuses to conduct lessons virtually from home.

Mom Nicole Price walks her first grade daughter Elan, 6, to her classroom on the first day of school at J.R. Baker Elementary School in Columbia.
Mom Nicole Price walks her first grade daughter Elan, 6, to her classroom on the first day of school at J.R. Baker Elementary School in Columbia.

Jack Cobb, the school district's communications director, said that the request to transition to remote learning was made due to low attendance of both students and educators in recent days.

More: 'Relearn school': Discipline amid pandemic dominates concerns at Maury County schools

Cobb told The Daily Herald each of Maury County's 24 campuses individually requested that the state temporarily allow the district to transition to remote learning.

More: Suburban, rural Tennessee districts dominate waiver requests to take schools virtual

"Each school applied separately and was approved," Cobb said Monday, after the school district said it would return to traditional classroom instruction.

The approval process included submitting attendance data from each campus, and MCPS was given approval to transition to the remote learning model for the two-day period, Cobb said.

More: COVID-19 cases skyrocket at Maury County Public Schools

Inside Spring Hill Middle School in Spring Hill, Tenn., on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.
Inside Spring Hill Middle School in Spring Hill, Tenn., on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.

As of Jan. 14, a total of 239 students and 51 educators and staff at MCPS had tested positive for COVID-19.

"Staff and students attendance was extremely low," Cobb said. "We don't want kids learning remotely. We prefer in-person learning. It is the most affective way to teach students."

MCPS was one of at least seven districts that were given permission by the state's department of education to pivot all of their schools to virtual learning for up to five days due to issues caused by COVID-19.

In April 2021, the State Board of Education approved a rule that Tennessee schools will not be able to teach students both in-person and remotely.

That August, Gov. Bill Lee said Tennessee's public schools would not have a path forward for transitioning to remote leaning.

Reach Mike Christen at mchristen@c-dh.net. Follow him on Twitter at @MikeChristenCDH and on Instagram at @michaelmarco. Please consider supporting his work and that of other Daily Herald journalists by subscribing to the publication.

This article originally appeared on The Daily Herald: MCPS returns to classroom after two-day transition to remote learning

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