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What to know before some Tulsa Public Schools students return to school

Posted at 10:37 PM, Nov 02, 2020

TULSA, Okla. — Tulsa Public Schools is one week away from welcoming some students back in the classroom.

TPS district staff gave an update Monday night, including the most current COVID-19 numbers for the district. There are 12 confirmed cases in staff and three in students.

Superintendent Deborah Gist said while it will take time to see trends in data, new and active case rates are significantly lower within Tulsa Public Schools boundaries for school-age students.

Staff and teachers are hard at work getting schools ready to welcome students again.

Before students go to school, parents will have to complete a health screening for their child each day. The screening consists of six questions. If you answer “yes” to any of them, you’re asked to keep your child home.

When students get to school, parents won't be allowed in the buildings. They must wait in their car for drop-off and pick-up. If your student rides the bus, he or she must wear a mask.

When it comes to being in the classroom, pre-K and kindergartners will be separated into “pods” of three to four students. Breakfast will be served in the classrooms and lunch will be in the classroom or cafeteria depending on the school.

Students must wear a mask with two or more layers that cover their nose and mouth. The only exceptions are for meals, any time they’re outside, or during the “mask breaks” they’ll have throughout the day. Schools will provide masks to those who don’t have one.

Dr. Gist encourages parents to talk to their children about the importance of these new rules.

“What we would really love is for families to spend time talking with their children about what it’s going to be like to practice mask-wearing," she said. "To make sure that they understand what the expectations will be around touching our friends and washing our hands.”

Parents will be notified of the first two incidents of a student not following the mask requirement. After a third notice, that student will be required to return to distance learning for the rest of the quarter.

Pre-K and kindergarten students return Nov. 9. First grade through third grade returns Nov. 16. Grades 4th-5th, along with elementary 6th graders, return Nov. 30.
Middle, junior high and high school students return Jan. 4.

You can find more information and TPS back to school resources here.

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