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State Board of Education creates committee to discuss school operations

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Posted at 4:38 PM, May 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-27 18:39:31-04

BOISE — The State Board of Education says in conjunction with the governor's office, they're putting together a committee to discuss school operations and all of the surrounding questions.

Social and physical distancing remains a critical factor in determining how schools can return, and it's a tricky one to manage.

Last fall, 80 percent of West Ada High Schools were overcrowded, which means maintaining distance will be a challenge if returning to face to face instruction. The committee's goal is not merely getting kids back to brick and mortar schools but adapting and adjusting operations like recess, lunch, and busing.

"Anything is on the table where school, districts are concerned, some of the things I've heard about revolve around split sessions where you have part of your student body come in the morning, part in the afternoon, some hybrid where part of your school week is physically in building and part is virtual, everything and anything in between," said the president of the board Debbie Critchfield.

Enrollment is also a priority item for the committee as they prepare for a 5 percent cut to next year's budget and enter contract negotiations.

"All of that is under the umbrella of enrollment dollars that they get that attached to the student, and I know that this something, that from discussions I've heard from board members, fiscal managers, and superintendent, they're not so naive to think that every single student is going to come back in the same form that they left," said Critchfield.