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Williamsville Central School District to release final reopening plan by Tuesday

Posted at 6:03 PM, Aug 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-24 18:03:36-04

WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Williamsville Central School District said it plans to release its final reopening plan by Tuesday.

Parents have been calling out the district over the past couple of days for what they say was a failure to properly communicate changes to the reopening plan. Superintendent Dr. Scott Martzloff said the plan is changing to try and meet the needs of everybody.

“It’s certainly not the intention of the district for anyone to be left in the dark," Martzloff said. "You know just because we’re finalizing a plan and making some certain adjustments to a plan, it doesn’t mean we’re trying to withhold that from parents.”

One of those changes was to the hybrid plan, and whether some students will have to take part in livestream learning on the weekdays when they're not in school. Several teachers who spoke at Friday's special school board meeting via Zoom opposed the livestream model of learning introduced in the second version of the reopening plan. They said it would be ineffective to teach both the at-home and in-person hybrid students at once via a camera.

Martzloff would not say if the livestream model will be included in the final reopening plan. On Friday, the district decided students in grades K-4 would not have to learn remotely on days when they're not in school.

During that Friday meeting some parents on the call, and protesters outside called for the superintendent to resign. On Monday, Martzloff called that request "ridiculous."

Martzloff said the only things that would cause the final plan to change and move to a fully remote model is not enough teachers returning, or a spike of cases in Western New York that would force schools to close under the state's guidelines.

“If we don’t have teachers in the classroom, we can’t teach kids," he said. "So in order to teach in the classroom, we need them to be here.”

Martzloff said about 40 people have requested accommodations or are not returning to work at all due to health and child care reasons.

The new deadline for parents to select a fully remote learning model is this Wednesday. Martzloff said parents are not locked in to one learning model for the entire year, and have the ability to switch.