Tampa Bay School Districts Plan To Delay Openings

Jul 15, 2020
Originally published on July 22, 2020 1:47 pm

Update July 22: See here for the latest story on school reopening plans in the greater Tampa Bay region.

Four school districts in the greater Tampa Bay region are pushing to move their start dates back amid the coronavirus pandemic and concern from teachers.

Hillsborough County School Superintendent Addison Davis announced on Twitter Wednesday that he's asked the School Board to delay the start of school by two weeks to Aug. 24.

Davis is scheduled to present a reopening plan to the board Thursday.

The Manatee, Polk and Sarasota county school districts each made separate announcements on Tuesday.

The Manatee County School Board voted to delay the start of school a week until Aug. 17.

Polk County is planning to open Aug. 24 at the earliest.

And Sarasota County is seeking a three-week delay, until Aug. 31.

Manatee plans to offer students a choice of full in-school instruction, online learning, or a combination of both. Sarasota and Polk students would be able choose between campus instruction, remote learning, or full-time virtual learning.

Tuesday’s announcements came on the same day as teachers and students in Pinellas County protested against the reopening of in-person classes.

A similar rally for Hillsborough County is planned for Wednesday at 9 a.m. the Florida Department of Education board meeting at Strawberry Crest High School in Dover. 

Both Pinellas and Hillsborough plan to reopen by Aug. 10.

The plans to delay openings would have to be approved by the state Department of Education.

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