ROCHESTER - Parents itching to find out details about the reopening of Rochester Schools will get their first glimpse at what the upcoming academic year may look like this Thursday when the School Board meets. The meeting will be held virtually and broadcast on the Rochester Government Channel, cable channel 26, and live streamed at www.rochesternh.net.
Earlier this month during an interview with Rochester Mayor Caroline McCarley and City Manager Blaine Cox, Rochester School Supt. Kyle Repucci said they are working nonstop to come up with contingency plans that cover a myriad of issues.
Repucci, while expressing some disappointment that Gov. Chris Sununu's reopening task force had not come up with stricter guidelines, he noted in the end, "Whatever we plan, we have to accommodate parents."
Studies have shown that around 80 percent of parents with school-age children want their children physically back in the classroom, but some parents may decide to keep their children home. Others may have underlying health conditions that put them more at risk. And some teachers, especially older ones, may have concerns for their own health.
Repucci said that this is one year there will likely not be a one-size fits all.
He did mention that one thing he expects to happen is some early assessments to gauge where students are after closing out the last few months using only online learning.
Repucci, in his interview, did say that the overwhelming majority of Chromebooks used by students came back in good shape, but the school is short on technology that may be required during the coming year.
He said right now school teachers and administrators are working on a slew of contingency plans, including mask guidelines, how and what has to be cleaned and how often, remote vs onsite vs hybrid learning models, and what new technology might be needed going forward.
Repucci also voiced concerns over the lack of contact points for parents and guardians and urged them to reach out to school officials to update contact info.
Individuals may update their contact information by visiting the "Parent/Guardian Contact Information" page on their student's respective school website. This link can be found at the bottom right-hand corner of their school's website and will remain active until Sept. 4.