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Students across Green Country head back to school amid pandemic

Posted at 5:29 AM, Aug 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-24 08:27:16-04

TULSA, Okla — Several school districts across Green Country start the 2020-21 school year on Monday.

Among them are Union, Owasso, Jenks and Sapulpa.

READ MORE: Green Country school districts release 2020-21 plans amid pandemic

Union Public Schools start the 2020-21 school year with both virtual and in-person classes.

Despite testing last week, the district is not aware how many staff members currently have COVID-19.

Superintendent Dr. Kirk Hartzler tells 2 Works for You last week about half of the UPS staff members completed antibody tests. Of those 1,100 tests, ten came back positive with COVID-19 antibodies.

The CDC said these tests can show the presence of proteins that fight off the coronavirus. But, those tests don't necessarily mean teachers have coronavirus right now.

Hartzler also said the building will be quite warm. They are filtering more outside air in the building throughout the day to keep staff and students safe. In addition, all classrooms and buildings are being sprayed down daily to prevent the spread of the virus.

Throughout the district, cafeterias and dining areas have plexi glass dividers and masks are required for every staff member and student entering the buildings.

Owasso Public Schools is also starting the year on Monday with a lot of changes. Owasso students will begin with all classes being taught online for the first nine weeks. The district pushed the first day back out of precaution due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The district call it the "Pivot to Home" Plan. Students are meeting with their teachers online via "Google Meet." Teachers will be instructing from their classrooms to have access to their resources.

Students do have another option for a full-time virtual learning experience. This schedule allows for online lesson plans for kids without seeing teachers for their lessons.

All students will use school Chromebooks to complete assignments.

During this learning from home, the district says extra curricular activities are still occurring, including programs like sports and fine arts.

District officials will continue to work with the Oklahoma State Department of Health and monitor COVID-19 cases before they decide to return to in-person classrooms.

Other districts welcoming back students today are Jenks Public Schools and Sapulpa Public Schools. Jenks is starting the year virtually while Sapulpa students have the choice between traditional, blended or virtual learning.

CLICK HERE for more information on Green Country school districts plans for the 2020-21 academic year.

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