Proposed reopening plan for Duval students includes protective shields for desks

Temperature screenings, transportation changes, altered start times also possible for Fall 2020

Temperature screenings and changes to start times may also be part of the plan to reopen.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – During a workshop meeting Tuesday, the Duval County School Board continued its discussion on the process of reopening schools following months of COVID-19-related challenges.

According to the board, the plan as of Tuesday is to reopen schools on Aug. 10 with significant health protocols in place, new safety equipment and altered procedures for a variety of the district’s departments.

The outline discussed today doesn’t represent the final or complete version of Duval County Public School’s reopening, as there is much left to be decided and developed, according to the School Board.

Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene said the plan to reopen Duval County’s schools will follow CDC and Department of Education rules and guidelines whenever possible and that it was developed with input from local medical communities, employees, unions, parents, contract providers and other stakeholders.

Part of the district’s plan includes the purchase and installation of protective partitions for desks and tables that cannot be placed at least six feet apart.

The cost of these barriers is not clear as the bid contract process was not completed as of Tuesday’s meeting.

A special, emergency board meeting is scheduled for June 30 to vote on the purchase of the shields.

To maintain social distancing, the district’s plan recommends limiting class sizes according to designated grades.

GradeClass size limit
Kindergarten - 3rd grade18 students
4th - 8th grade22 students
9th - 12th grade25 students

Teachers, school staff and students will be provided with personal protective equipment. Pre-K through second-grade students will be provided reusable face shields and the rest of students will be provided cloth face coverings.

More information on the reopening plan can be found on the district’s website.

The superintendent told News4jax information will be coming out in early July about the options that will be available to families, and will be easily accessible on the district's website.

About the Authors:

McLean is a reporter with WJXT, covering education and breaking news. He is a frequent contributor to the News4Jax I-team and Trust Index coverage.