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More details remain for MCPS fall plans

MCPS will negotiate to add seat belts to Missoula school buses
Posted at 2:54 PM, Jun 15, 2020

MISSOULA — Missoula County Public Schools leaders plan a return to "face-to-face" instruction this fall.

But they're advising parents to "stay tuned" as the district continues to pin down all the details necessary to re-opening schools.

MCPS released an update on Friday indicating that the district is anticipating "in-person" instruction come September, saying the plan will be "responsive" to the physical and mental health and wellness of "students and staff".

The plan will rely on collaboration, adaptation, and flexibility from students, staff, families, and the "greater Missoula community", taking into account COVID-19 conditions in Missoula and the surrounding counties. The plans must also follow state and local guidelines.

Superintendent Rob Watson says the district is "looking forward" to having students back in the classrooms but he says more details must be ironed out.

"We want to be clear with families that it's our intention to have in-person instruction and re-open our school buildings, understanding that some students may not be able to attend because of medical reasons. And we will have alternate plans for them. But our intention is to have kids back in the building. I think what's difficult at this point is knowing really for sure what that's going to look like."

Watson hopes to have more details in July and advises parents to stay tuned and watch for updates. He says the district will also follow up with parents and explain options in cases where students' health might make returning to class a concern.