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Columbia County ready to welcome back virtual students

Published: Sep. 22, 2020 at 11:14 PM EDT
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EVANS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - It was a night of beginnings and endings tonight for our CSRA school districts.

But first, a standing ovation in Columbia County for Superintendent Dr. Sandra Carraway, announcing her retirement after working in the school system for 33 years.

" I’ve been contemplating retirement, and to help ensure a smooth transition, and continue forward progress, I want to announce my intent to retire at the end of this school year," she said.

But there was still work to do. The board moved to unveil pictures of the high school campus coming to the old Evans Elementary School site.

“It’s nearing completion and our site engineers are working on the site plans for that work. We hope to have that bid by mid-December, and then for the facility shortly after,” Carraway said.

Meanwhile, more than a thousand elementary and middle school students have opted to switch from the learning-at-home model to face-to-face instruction come October.

That means a little more than 20 percent of students will be learning from home, while around 80 percent will be back on campus.

“We are so glad to see our parents choosing to have their children in school because we know how important, essential school is to the mental, physical, social, and emotional wellbeing of children,” Carraway said.

But parents must be sure before opting to send their kids back to the classroom – as the district will not allow classroom students to go back home unless they have a medical condition.

Meanwhile, in Aiken County, Friday night lights are the big topic. Ticket sales have moved online, and stadiums are at reduced capacity for sports games.

“We will really see what pandemic football looks like on a Friday night. With the social distancing, with fewer people in the stands,” King Laurence, superintendent of Aiken County Public Schools, said.

The Richmond County Board of Education will be meeting next Tuesday on September 29, for a special called meeting.

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