CMS elementary students return to class after months of remote learning

School Watch

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE)- Charlotte-Mecklenburg elementary school students are back in the classroom once again after months of all remote learning from home.

More than 26,000 students across CMS are set to come back Monday and Tuesday. Then, those students will learn from home the rest of the week and another set of students will rotate to in-person learning on Thursday and Friday.

This is for elementary students and K-8 schools only. Middle and high schools don’t come back in-person until next week.

This isn’t the first time these elementary students have returned to school buildings this year.

In early November, elementary students in CMS went to a mix of in-person and remote learning, but about a month later the number of COVID-19 cases in the community skyrocketed, so students went back to all remote learning.

CMS superintendent Earnest Winston has been visiting classrooms all day today to look at safety protocols.

“Our students have been doing an amazing job in terms of making sure they have their face coverings on, that they’re social distancing when they get off the buses, when they’re in the hallways, when they’re in the classrooms,” Winston said. “Our students are resilient and they’ve been doing an amazing job, thanks to the hard work of our teachers and our school leadership.”

CMS tells FOX 46 that about 60,000 of its students are in the full remote academy meaning they and their parents have opted to keep them learning from home and not returning to school buildings.

One of the things FOX 46 asked the superintendent on Monday was whether teachers will be required to get vaccinated.

Winston says there are no plans to require vaccines for teachers and school staff but he’s strongly encouraging teachers to get the shots.

For the past two weekends, CMS has worked with Novant Health to vaccinate teachers and school staff 65 and older.

“I understand that there are some staff members who have some fears and hesitancy about getting the vaccine, I understand that. But if we are going to build the immunity that we need in our community, it is going to take not just CMS staff, but everyone in our community, when it is their turn to sign up for an appointment and get the vaccine.”

Starting next Wednesday, Feb. 24 teachers and school staff in North Carolina, regardless of age, can begin getting their COVID-19 vaccines.

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