San Diego County

San Diego County Elementary Schools With Waivers Prepare for In-Person Instruction

San Diego County has received 95 applications for elementary schools looking to get waivers for in-person instruction; so far, the county has approved 27 schools

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Dozens of San Diego County elementary schools and districts are preparing for a return to in-person instruction after public health officials approved waivers that allow them to reopen campuses to students.

The Rock Academy, a private Christian school in San Diego, says they have plans and procedures to keep students safe when classes start again in person on Aug. 31.

Head of School Chuck Leslie says he expects 90% of his elementary school students to come back for in-person classes.

Students will be required to have temperature and symptom checks at the entrance. School staff and students in third grade and above will be required to wear face coverings, and students below third grade will be strongly recommended to wear a mask.

Classes will be about half their normal size, with 12 students in each class. They will also stay in their group of 12 all day to minimize possible exposure to other students.

NBC 7's Nicole Gomez shares the latest details on the San Diego County schools that have, so far, been approved to reopen their physical campuses under a waiver.

"The student does school better the younger they are when they can do it in person," Leslie said.

Leslie said his phones have been ringing from parents wanting to know if the Rock Academy has any open spots for their kids to attend.

Nikki Clifford has a 10-year-old daughter at the Rock Academy who she says can't wait to get back into the classroom.

"I mean, if body language is a major part of communication, she needs that, she needs to see her teachers, she needs to be around children," Clifford said.

As of Thursday, 27 schools or school districts had their waivers approved and 95 schools or school districts had applied for the waiver. The county is keeping those waiver lists updated on its website daily here.

School waivers are reviewed by county public health experts and then sent to the state for further review and guidance.

NBC 7 has been tracking how each school district in San Diego County plans to tackle the challenging 2020-21 school year.

CORONAVIRUS IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY: What You Need to Know: Latest Developments | Resources | How to Help | What Has Reopened? | Photos: Coronavirus Impact in SD

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