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Letter to the Editor

A Message From McKenzie Special School District’s Director

Posted 7/28/20

I hope all are looking forward to starting a new school year. I wanted to make sure that all understand that the State Board of Education has mandated that schools in Tennessee provide 180 days of …

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Letter to the Editor

A Message From McKenzie Special School District’s Director

Posted

I hope all are looking forward to starting a new school year. I wanted to make sure that all understand that the State Board of Education has mandated that schools in Tennessee provide 180 days of instruction for all of their students. What does that mean? How is that different? Last spring due to the pandemic we closed our doors, and for the most part instruction stopped. This year that will not be allowed. If once again the pandemic causes us to remove students from our campuses we will continue to teach. Our teachers and staff will continue to provide daily instruction and support. The participation by our students will not be optional. They will receive grades, work toward credits required for graduation, and will by some means be held accountable for attendance. My personal opinion is that this places a hardship on most of our parents. Our parents work hard and should not have to come home and make sure that schoolwork has been done. For our younger students, it can’t be done without adult support. Sadly, many of our students will fall behind.

We want to teach our students in our buildings. We are the teachers. We have the training. It is what we like to do. The quality of face to face instruction cannot be matched with distance learning. We need to have an opportunity to provide the social and emotional support each child needs. School-age children need to be around other children. They need the school experience.

How can you help us? Practice social distancing. Teach your children to practice good hygiene. Make them wash their hands often. Practice wearing face coverings. By experience, I have learned that the more I wear a mask the easier it becomes. Support the changes that we have made to our school days. Let your child know that while it may seem tedious, it is how we will get to continue to have school that is best for them. The only way to get through this is together.

Can’t wait to see the kids,

Lynn Watkins

Director of Schools

Mask Requirement at McKenzie Schools

To adhere to guidelines from the Tennessee Department of Health, all staff, students, and visitors will be required to wear masks in our facilities. We understand that mask wearing might not be feasible for young children or those with certain medical conditions. Thank you for your cooperation.

Lynn Watkins

Director of Schools

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