Birmingham City Schools releasing a district wide COVID-19 dashboard

Birmingham City goes back to school

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Birmingham City Schools students go back into the classroom starting Monday, November 9th.

“Even though we started school virtually in August, this is kind of like the first day of school,” Superintendent Dr. Mark Sullivan said.

Sullivan said 60% of students will return for in person learning on a blended schedule. Kindergarten through 8th grade students start this week and high school students will start next week.

Dr. Sullivan said the district has watched other school districts that have already one in person instruction to see what works and what doesn’t.

“I think our parents may have also seen some of the other school districts in other counties and across our state go back,” Sullivan said. “They’ve seen that there have been a limited number of individuals who have contracted coronavirus within a school. I think they feel comfortable with the conditions that we have put in place to make sure their kids are safe and our teachers are safe.”

The district launched a safe return portal for parents. It includes a district wide COVID-19 dashboard where parents can see how many cases are in what specific school.

“We have extra masks on our busses, so that if a student shows up on a bus route without a mask, then a mask is available for them from our bus drivers," Dr. Sullivan said. “We got 30,000 masks from the state of Alabama, so we have a lot of PPE.”

Dr. Sullivan said the district will also assess the students as they come back to identify learning gaps. He said the assessments are done every year.

“Our kids had some summer slides, some coronavirus slides, so we are going to do another round of assessments to kind of get an idea of where they are," Dr. Sullivan said.

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