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LCPS answers frequently asked questions about phased-in return to school

From Staff Reports
Las Cruces Sun-News
Las Cruces High School sits empty of students on Feb. 9, 2021. Las Cruces Public Schools has remained remote since March 2020.

LAS CRUCES - Las Cruces Public Schools administrators on Friday addressed some frequently asked questions surrounding the phased-in return to the classroom beginning Feb. 22.

High school students were given a survey with three instruction options for the remainder of the year: remain fully online, remain online with limited in-person assistance at school, or return in-person two days a week. If I did not receive a survey, how do I know which group my student is in? 

Families who did not respond were automatically put in the fully remote category, so there will be no change to your student’s status for the remainder of the semester. If you did not receive a survey, please contact your student’s school.  

Will my student be attending the same classes as their online schedule? 

Yes, but not in person. High school students will report to their classroom, assigned by cohort, and remain in that room for the duration of the day. They will bring their charged laptop or school-assigned device and log on to Canvas classes. Students who are in the building will receive additional face-to-face support throughout the day in their assigned cohort.  

More:State supplies guidance for high school sports, pushing full practice back for LCPS schools

I understand breakfast and lunch will be available at school for students who choose to go back. Can I still send lunch with my child?  

Yes, your student can bring lunch from home. Breakfast and lunch will be available in the grab-and-go style and students will eat lunch together in the classroom.  

My child will need transportation. When will bus service resume for students? 

Logistics are being finalized for students who will need bus transportation and will start Monday, March 1 at your previously designated bus stop.  

As of today, Doña Ana County is in the yellow when it comes to the positivity rate for COVID-19. If infection rates go up and we are placed in the red status, will schools close again?  

Schools in the LCPS district will not be affected by the Red to Green framework.  However, if an increased number of positive cases are reported at a school, the Public Education Department may choose to close a school temporarily. If that happens, learning will still continue remotely.  

I understood that my child will return to school in a cohort. How do I know what day he will be in school?  

Initially, cohorts were divided by last name. As schools estimated the number of educators available in the classroom, the number of students allowed inside was adjusted. As a result, each school will determine what schedule works best for their staff and students. If you have not heard from your child’s school, please reach out to them.   

More:Las Cruces High teachers talk about hybrid reentry and why it's necessary

I have a child in elementary school and middle school. When will they have the opportunity to return?  

Elementary and middle school students will be phased in starting March 1 according to those students who need additional learning or social/emotional support. At the middle school level, that equates to just over 700 students who will also attend school in cohorts. Approximately 1,800 elementary students will return March 1 for small group, in-person learning. If your child was not identified in the group to return, additional opportunities will be available as more educators return to the classroom.  

What can I do to make sure my student is ready before returning to in-building learning? 

All students will proceed through a wellness check when they arrive at school. To ensure everyone’s safety, parents are asked to keep their children home if they have any of the following symptoms: 

  • Fever greater than 100.4, or chills 
  • Cough 
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing 
  • Fatigue 
  • Muscle or body aches  
  • Headache  
  • New loss of taste or smell  
  • Sore throat 
  • Congestion or runny nose 
  • Nausea/vomiting 
  • Diarrhea  

All students will be required to wear a face mask daily to school. Allowable face masks include: masks made of two or more layers of cloth, disposable masks, face masks with a clear plastic window or masks that are made with clear material, or surgical, procedural, N95 OR KN95 masks. Masks that are not allowed include: masks that have exhalation valves or vents, bandanas, scarves, neck gaiters (also known as a neck fleece) or face shields unless an approved face covering is worn underneath.