Calvert County Schools Move Toward Hybrid Instruction


Zachary Kimmel

by Zachary Kimmel

Due to the rise in COVID-19 cases, Calvert County had suspended its plan to return to hybrid learning until further notice; however, on January 21, Governor Hogan announced he would like to see all schools return some, if not all, students to in person learning by March 1st.”Our children cannot simply afford any more roadblocks,” said Governor Hogan.

State School Superintended Dr. Karen Salmon added, “The time has come to reopen schools.”

Calvert County Public Schools initially planned to have students go back to school on a hybrid model on Jan 19. Hybrid learning provides students the opportunity to do both in person and online attendance. For hybrid learning to get the green light again Calvert County Schools Superintendent Dr. Daniel Curry said, “We need those numbers (COVID test positivity rates) to come back closer to 5% and stay there before we consider restarting our hybrid plan.” Dr. Curry referenced the rise of COVID cases that happened over the Christmas break.

Part of the plan to move to the hybrid model gives the students the choice to remain completely virtual.  “The reason for the hybrid model is to reduce the number of students in one room and allow for 6 feet distance as much as possible,” said Dr. Curry.

Schools in nearby counties and states have tried in person or hybrid learning. The districts in Pennsylvania have state guidance to decide in person learning or hybrid. Baltimore County Teachers recently received the COVID-19 vaccine which could mean that Baltimore County Public schools may start up sooner than later. In an interview with WBALTV11 Carrol County teacher Karen Reisdorf said, “Carrol educators want to be with their classrooms when it is safe.” She did not define what “safe” entails.

When hybrid learning does begin there will be rules and guidelines in place, such as 6 feet apart social distancing and wearing a mask. But Dr. Curry stated, “we’ll still be limited to 15 (students) per room, we’ll have to have controls on hallway traffic and capacity of the cafeteria.” This means hallways will have to limit the amount of people leaving and entering.

Schools will have to sanitize desks and classrooms. Dr. Curry said, “Each classroom will have proper materials to clean and sanitize desks at each class change.” He also mentioned “keeping high traffic areas (hallways, building entrances, bathrooms) cleaned and cleaned again.”

According to a January 26 press release from Calvert County Public schools, as a result of Governor Hogan’s new guidance, schools will reopen for special population and PreK through second grade (hybrid model) on February 8. According to a February 8 press release, hybrid instruction will begin for grades 3-6 on February 22 and grades 7-12 on March 8.