MCSD plans for full in-person learning next school year

Staff report

     As students at Monticello High School prepared to celebrate prom, Monticello Schools Superintendent Brian Jaeger had some positive news concerning COVID.

     Jaeger shared his update via video on Friday, April 16.

     “Our school numbers are fantastic this week,” he praised.

     At the elementary school level, there were zero staff and four students out for COVID-related reasons. Within the middle school and high school, zero staff and zero students out.

     “Our numbers are really down this week,” continued Jaeger. “That’s great news for all of us.”

     With roughly 30 days left of the school year, Jaeger said it appears things are on a good path COVID-wise.

     Sharing information from Jones County Public Health, Jaeger said the 14-day positivity rate for Monticello is 5.4 percent. In the last seven days, three COVID-19 cases had been reported locally.

     “That’s pretty good,” said Jaeger. “We’re in a pretty good place with our stabilization right now.”

     Jaeger said if more and more residents get vaccinated, things could only get better from here.

     Over 7,700 citizens of Jones County have either gotten one or both vaccine doses. About 700 received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot.

     Jaeger said with about 20,000 living in Jones County, minus the population of children, between 40 and 50 percent of adults, 18 and older, have been vaccinated.

     “That’s a great thing,” he said.

     Jaeger praised JCPH for their initial rollout of the vaccine in Jones County.

     “JCPH really led the charge out of the gate with this and got a lot of people vaccinated in a short amount of time,” he said of JCPH’s efforts. “So kudos to them for doing this and putting it together.”

     Jaeger also praised the MCSD teachers, staff, parents, and students for their flexibility and determination throughout the school year. He thanked everyone for their hard work and dedication.

     “Under these circumstances, it’s been a really difficult year,” he said. “For everybody, it’s been a difficult year.

     “This was a year unlike any other. We’ve all lived with a little bit of extra stress, extra precautions, trying to find a place to get a vaccine, or trying to stay healthy.”

     As the 2020-21 school year comes to an end, Jaeger warned those families who are still taking part in hybrid or full-online learning that this alternative option will not be available next school year.

     “We’re looking more at trying to get back to in-person learning, the way that we’ve done it in the past and get everybody back in the school buildings next year,” Jaeger explained.

     He said more details would be released later this summer, before school starts in the fall.


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