FAQs about Return to School Policy

Published 4:32 pm Thursday, July 16, 2020

Frequently Asked Questions about the Return to School plan


How will the SPSD return to school in August? 

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The South Panola School District will open schools on Aug. 3, 2020 for teachers and Aug. 6, 2020 for students, with a traditional schedule. We will have a distance learning option for parents who are not comfortable with the traditional method.


 Will my child have the option for distance learning? Yes. Parents MUST confirm their child’s learning option by July 24. Parents will be called July 20-21 by the school in which their child(ren) attends to choose an option. 


Will training be offered for students/ teachers/parents on Google Classroom? Yes. Training videos and downloadable materials are available by clicking on the following links and opening the files in a new window: students, teachers, and parents.


 If my child is sent home/ misses school due to fever or COVID-19 symptoms, will there be an option to distance learn? Yes. Parents/guardians will be allowed to choose temporary distance learning until the student is able to return to school. 


Do I need to register my child in the South Panola School District if we select distance learning? Yes. Registration is required for in person and distance learning, and before a device will be issued to a student. South Panola School District 209 Boothe Street • Batesville, MS 38606 • 662-563-9361


 Will face coverings be required to be worn at all times by students? While in the classroom, face coverings are not required for students, but strongly encouraged. Coverings must be worn by all students when outside of the classroom, such as entering and exiting the building, changing classes, and in any hallways or common areas. Face coverings will not be required during recess or while taking part in physical education classes. If parents/ guardians choose to utilize transportation provided by the South Panola School District, the student will be required to wear a face covering while on the school bus. ALL FACE COVERINGS MUST BE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE SPSD DRESS CODE POLICY.


 Will face coverings be provided? SPSD intends to provide two washable face masks and one face shield to each student and employee. Parents may have to provide replacements if those coverings are lost. ALL FACE COVERINGS MUST BE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE SPSD DRESS CODE POLICY. 


Will students/staff be screened for symptoms at school? Daily temperature checks will be required for all students and staff. Students and staff should not come to school if they have a fever (defined as a temperature of 100.4 degrees or above) or have displayed other symptoms of COVID-19. If a student or staff member is found to have a fever while at school they will be referred to the school nurse for evaluation.


 What cleaning/sanitizing protocols will be in place? A COVID-19 enhanced cleaning protocol has been put in place for nightly cleaning. Hand sanitizers, disinfectant wipes, and disinfecting spray are available in every classroom. Hand sanitizers are available throughout all buildings. Touchless water fountains are being installed in all buildings. South Panola School District 209 Boothe Street • Batesville, MS 38606 • 662-563-9361 


What measures will be in place for students riding a bus to and from school? All students and the bus driver will be required to wear a face covering. 


What happens when my child(ren) arrives at school? Upon arrival at school, students will unload the bus or vehicle while remaining masked, and enter the school through entry points designated by the building principal. Students who eat breakfast at school may obtain their meals from the cafeteria and take it to their homeroom class. Students who do not eat breakfast at school must report directly to their homeroom classroom.


 May I walk my child(ren) into school? Parents will not be allowed to walk students into the building. School staff members will be available to assist students in the building. 


Will all meals, breakfast and lunch, be eaten in the classroom? Yes, in order to limit any congregation of students, all meals will be eaten in the classroom.


 Will the school district provide my child with a computer? ALL students will be issued a Chromebook and a backpack for use at both school and home. Once a learning option is chosen, regardless of traditional or distance learning, instructions will be given to parents regarding the distribution of the Chromebook and backpack. Parents must complete registration of their child before any device is issued to a student. 


Will my child have the opportunity to take part in extracurricular activities? The South Panola School District will follow the guidance and activities calendar of the Mississippi High School Activities Association (MHSAA) regarding school athletic and activity programs. South Panola School District 209 Boothe Street • Batesville, MS 38606 • 662-563-9361


 Are there any changes to the grading policy in regards to face-to-face instruction versus distant learning? Grading for students in the traditional classroom setting and distance learning environment will follow the same SPSD grading policies as listed in the school’s student handbook. 


Will students have recess? Recess for students in grades Pre-k through fifth will be conducted in a designated location by class. There will be no interaction with students outside of the static classroom at recess. 


Will there be parent/teacher conferences in person? Teachers will utilize various tools to communicate with parents (virtual meetings, video calls, email, and telephone calls). In-person meetings will be scheduled as needed. How will I check my child out for appointments or sign them in afterward? Students will be checked in and out through the office. The parent/guardian must wear a face covering while inside the office building doing so. 


How will attendance be determined? The Mississippi Department of Education is creating an attendance policy that will be available soon.


Will CTE skilled courses be offered through distance learning? No. CTE skilled courses cannot be offered through distance learning because of the hand-ons nature of the classes. They will require in-person instruction and training hours. Students may take their core classes through distance learning but must come to school to receive training hours for these courses: Construction, Industrial Manufacturing, Ag Mechanics, Ag Animals, Horticulture, Welding, Automotive Mechanics, Culinary Arts, Sports Medicine, Health Science, and Early Childhood. 


Will my child have to come to school to take assessments or tests if taking part in distance learning? Yes, state assessments and some district assessments will be proctored by a South Panola School District employee in a classroom set aside for assessment of online students.