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LCSS prepares for in-person classes
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Liberty County School Superintendent Dr. Franklin Perry said they are planning to open School Aug 4, for in-person classroom instruction.

Dr. Perry made the announcement at the end of a Special Called Board meeting held July 3. However, he stipulated they are also prepared for any last-minute changes that may come from the State Board of Education.

“Hopefully by our July 14 meeting, we will have some indication as to where we are, but it could be until the end of July before we really know. What I will say is that we have plans in place either way this goes. Whether we can bring our children back or whether we have to serve them virtually we are prepared,” he said.

Perry said roughly 5,000 parents responded to the survey that the LCSS sent out via email and social media. He said of the responses they’ve received so far, 35 percent of the respondents stated they preferred virtual study while the remainder wanted their children to return to in-person classroom education.

The deadline for the survey was Friday July 3.

Information posted on the LCSS website states that parents who want their children to continue virtual studies will be asked to commit to a specified time such as nine-weeks or possibly an entire semester. After the specified time is over, their children will be able to transfer to onsite instruction. As of now the specified time limit they will have to commit to has not been determined. An option of allowing students to complete the entire school year virtually is being worked out with more information pending.

The website posting also states that Principals will work with teachers and staff to maintain social distancing and that the LCSS will make every effort to keep class sizes small. Wearing masks will be encouraged for staff and students. Meals will be served on disposable plates and the lunchroom will be sectioned off to adhere to social distancing. It is possible that students will eat their meals in their classrooms.

Perry said parents should download copy of the Georgia's Path to Recovery for K-12 Schools document from their website as well as read all the frequently asked questions posted online.

The Special Called meeting was held to address a change of order for Snelson Golden Middle School.

Chief Operation Officer Arnold Jackson reminded the Board that in April Lavender Construction received the bid for $2 million in renovations at SGMS for a total cost of $2,003,000.00. The district is eligible to receive $762,300 from the state.

But Jackson said The Hinesville Fire Department and the State Fire Marshal inspected SGMS as part of their renovation inspection and noticed several pre-existing fire violations. They recommended these violations be corrected as part of the recently approved renovations.

Dr. Perry later clarified that until these improvements are done all other renovations would stop.

Jackson said the recommendations included the installation and repair of any voids in walls identified as smoke/fire partitions or barriers. They also have to install retrofit smoke dampers in smoke partitions as required. Connect new smoke dampers to fire alarm system as required. Install smoke resistive ceiling tile system as required. Remove existing invalid stenciling reference to fire partitions in hallways.

The cost to fix the violations will cost the LCSS $152,533.73 which will be funded by the Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

The Board approved the motion.

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