BY BRUCE BRANUM
The Greenville Standard
The Butler County Board of Education voted last Thursday to delay students return to school until Tuesday, Sept. 8.
Teachers and support staff will return on Monday, Aug. 17, where they will undergo training and preparation for delivery of instruction to students in a traditional classroom setting and the new virtual platform to be provided.
According to Butler County School System Superintendent, Joe Eiland, “This additional time before students return to school is crucial for teacher/staff training, implementation of health and safety protocols, and also to allow adequate time for the remainder of the safety products and materials that have been ordered to be delivered to our schools.
”Most importantly, as Butler County has recently been designated as a “hot spot” in Alabama for COVID-19, a delayed opening date for the students will hopefully allow time for a reduction in the number of cases in our area and a safer environment for our students to return to school.
“Our year round employees continue to work diligently to sanitize buildings and procure sanitation supplies and personal protective equipment for all of our students and staff members.
“I extend my deepest appreciation to these hard working individuals who are determined to make the opening of the 2020/2021 school year a reality.
”I appreciate the patience and understanding of our community members as we strive to meet the challenges that have been placed before our school system this year.
”The mission of our system remains consistent – we are Boldly Committed to Student Success and we will continue to provide the best educational services possible to enable our students to flourish.”
Eiland said that fall sports will continue as planned. Both Greenville High School and Georgiana varsity football teams will open their seasons on Aug. 21.
Greenville High will face Hillcrest-Evergreen and Georgiana will play Lanette. McKenzie starts their season against Marengo on Aug 28. All games are expected to start a 7 p.m.
Fort Dale Academy will open its doors to student classroom instruction as originally planned on Aug. 19.
They have also been busy preparing staff and classrooms for safety guidelines. Their varsity football team will face Tuscaloosa Academy on Sept. 4. at 7 p.m.
Lurleen B. Wallace Community College has announced it will welcome students back for the fall semester on Aug. 17 and is currently taking applications.
There will be safety guidelines to follow and a modified instructional schedule, including on-campus courses delivered in a hybrid or traditional format.