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Ottawa district divides students into groups

Greg Mast
gmast@ottawaherald.com
The Ottawa USD 290 school district will have two groups of students attend in-person instruction to start the 2020-21 school year.

In-person education will be different for Ottawa school district students.

The 2020-21 school year runs Sept. 9 through May 28, 2021.

The students will be divided into two groups and attend school in three-hour blocks. The A groups meet in the morning and the B groups in the afternoon.

Here are the times for the group at each school:

OMS and OHS

Group A: Monday-Thursday, 7:45 a.m.-10:45 a,m; Group B: 12:05 p.m.-3:05 p.m.; Friday, Group A: 7:45 a.m.-10:07 a.m.; Group B: 11:27 a.m.-1:50 p.m.

Garfield and Sunflower Elementary

Group A: Monday-Thursday, 7:55 a.m.-10:55 a.m.; Group B: 12:20 p.m.-3:20 p.m.; Friday, Group A: 7:55 a.m.-10:15 a.m.; Group B: 11:35 a.m.-1:55 p.m.

Lincoln Elementary

Group A: Monday-Thursday, 8:05 a.m.-11:05 a.m.; Group B: 12:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m.; Friday, Group A: 8:05 a.m.-10:25 a.m.; Group B: 11:45 a.m.-2:05 p.m.

Eugene Field

OLC

Monday: 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Engage

Monday-Thursday: 8:25 a.m.,-3:05 p.m.; Friday, 8:25 a.m.-1:50 p.m.

A transportation plan is still being developed, school officials said.

“We are trying to address transportation issues as a hybrid learning environment impacts parents differently,” Ottawa superintendent Ryan Cobbs said. “We are looking to add multiple pick-up points on both the north side and south side for our in town bus routes in an effort to ease parent anxiety about how to get their kids to and from school, while also lessening the volume of students coming through the drop off line, so that we can screen appropriately before coming into the building. Currently, our Director of Transportation is working to verify these points.”

Cobbs said those transportation plans will be released once they are locked in.

Athletics and activities will have their normal schedules. Fall sports practices begin Monday for OMS and OHS athletes.

“There will be guidelines all our programs will be asked to follow including hygiene principles and training, the wearing of face masks, screening procedures, equipment protocols, transportation protocols, as well as sport/activity specific protocols that are in place to maintain that safe environment to the best of our abilities,” Cobbs said.

The district is still working to address spectators attending athletic contests in this environment, Cobbs said.

“We are currently under Phase 3 of the governor’s reopening plan, which would allow for groups of no more than 45 at an event,” he said. “This certainly creates issues with logistics and who can spectate at an event. Please know that we are in continuous conversations with our county health officials regarding this and are working through what the best solution will be.”

Cobbs said the main goal is to return the students back safely into a learning environment.

“I appreciate your patience and support as we continue to work through these difficult times,” Cobbs said. “We look forward to getting our students back into school and back to learning.”