Wake County schools seeking input from parents, workers on COVID safety plan and relief fund spending

Wake County News

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — If you have a student attending Wake County Public Schools or you work for the school system, the district needs input when it comes to spending federal COVID-19 relief funds and the safety plan for the fall.

The school district recently sent out two surveys.

In the heat of July, school may be the last thing on any child’s mind, but some parents are already looking forward to fall.

After a year of virtual learning, Portia Bobbitt is ready for her kids to head back to the classroom, but wants to make sure they’re safe.

“I’m real concerned, but I’m excited because I’m so tired of the kids being at home,” she said.

Researchers with the Duke-led ABC Science Collaborative say North Carolina successfully prevented most cases of COVID-19 transmission within schools.

“With masking the schools can clearly safely deliver face-to-face education,” said Dr. Danny Benjamin. “It’s less than a 1 percent secondary attack rate we’ve estimated.”

Bobbitt’s daughter, Mya Conyers, 10, is willing to take any precautions necessary to get back to class.

“We don’t want other people to get sick at school and affect the whole school,” she said.

The Wake County school system is asking for feedback on its safety plan, which requires face coverings when students are in the building, asks students to maintain as much distance as possible, and emphasizes hand washing and staying home when students are sick.

“My priority would be the distancing,” said Yudelka Almonte, mother of a rising 5th grader. “I also know that that’s going to be a challenge because that means that they would have to change the amount of kids that they have in each classroom.”

“I think they need all of the above,” said Bobbitt.

The district also wants to hear about preferences for spending federal COVID-19 relief money and asks people to rank priorities. Some of the options include academic support, mental health support, and improving building safety to reduce virus transmission.

WCPSS is asking for responses to the funding survey no later than July 9 and expects to share preliminary plans later in July.

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