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'I really want a roll-out of the plan': Bibb parent, school board react to new start date announcement

The fall semester is in limbo and some parents say they are ready for a final decision to be made.

MACON, Ga. — After the Tuesday night announcement that Bibb County schools would start after Labor Day, parents say they have concerns heading into the fall semester. Michelle Sumrall is one of them.

"I don't know how you enforce mask-wearing at school, hand washing, hand sanitizing, I just don't know how you do that going back to school full force," says Sumrall.

Sumrall is the mother of 12-year-old Aleisha Sumrall. She says heading into Thursday's town hall meeting, she has a list of questions for Superintendent Curtis Jones.

"I really want a roll-out of the plan, so I understand we have a later start date, but is that full force in the classroom, every child, or is virtual still an option?" she says. 

"Will they change classes? Will the teachers rotate? Just what's it going to look like? I think we need all of that before we can effectively make a decision on what we want to do with our children," she adds.

Sumrall and her daughter took the school district survey to request online learning and school board president Daryl Morton says depending on the next few weeks, virtual learning could be the only option for the fall semester.

"We believe that there is going to be a point during the school year where everybody will be taught virtually. You keep hearing about a second wave of the virus which means you have to have the technology in place for children to do e-learning from home," he says.

Morton says for now, they are playing it by ear, but the plan is to have a final decision by mid-August.

"We could have a situation with some kids are at home learning virtually, some kids are in school or it could be everybody is learning virtually. It just depends on what happens with the virus numbers basically," he says.

The deadline for parents to the survey has been extended to July 12.

The school board town hall will be Thursday night at 5:30 p.m.

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