Kennewick Schools, by a narrow 3-2 vote by the school board, have decided to spend at least the first month doing online distance learning.

During Wednesday night's board meeting KSD announced that classes across the district will begin with remote learning.

According to Superintendent Dr. Traci Pierce, this is based upon the fact that Benton County is in a modified Phase 1.5, and the Benton Franklin Health District recommended they not open. The District plans to, beginning around Sept. 15, re-evaluate the situation and look at in-class for October onward.

NO doubt the letter sent by Dr. Amy Person to all the area Districts weighed heavily on the decisions of these boards. Pasco has delayed their decision until August 11, but most people believe they will follow suit.

Her letter read as follows:

“The Benton Franklin Health District understands the important roles the schools play in providing quality education, social emotional learning, addressing special needs and providing assistance meeting basic needs. However, we also believe that protecting the health of our students and schools staff should be a priority."

“At this time, I do not recommend schools reopen on Sept. 1, 2020 for in-person instruction, except for consideration for small groups, smaller than five, to support educationally at-risk students (with special needs.)”

As of 9AM Thursday, no specifics were posted yet or new update on the KSD website. Parents will now have to wait, especially those with elementary students, to see how the educational curriculum will be carried out.

It's presumed it will be easier with middle and high school students as they are equipped with Chromebooks, and used these to finish the 2019-2020 year online. But the K-5 classes are going to be a challenge.

The KSD meeting also indicated in class will be heavily determined by what Phase Benton County goes to between now and end of September, for example, if Phase 2 or 2.5 or 3, more likely for full in class. It appears the students fates are in the hand of the BFHD.

To see the KSD website click on the button below.

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