Jackson County Schools Superintendent Kevin Dukes explained how the district has moved forward and will continue to move forward with its schools at the Jackson County Board of Education meeting Thursday evening.  

Dukes started out by talking about grades. When school got out, the third nine weeks was ending. Teachers took the highest of the first, second or third nine weeks and let that be the student’s fourth nine weeks grade.

Started out with a feeding program atone centralized location at Dutton. When the stay at home order was put in place, they decided to cancel the feeding program for the safety pf their employees.

EBT cards are now being issued. Dukes said that is not through the board of education. It is done through the Department of Human Resources, but it will go to a great deal of Jackson County students.

Kindergarten registration is going on right now, said Dukes. He said the school system started it to be convenient for folks. They did it 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Tuesday and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday. They put boxes out at each school so people can pick up a packet and bring it back to the school. Dukes said they did that so people would not come in direct contact with one another.

Dukes said he has been asked about graduation dates. He said that he is waiting on Gov. Kay Ivey’s next move. He expects Ivey to make another announcement on Tuesday, and he will move forward after that.

“We will have them, and I will say, more than likely, it’s going to be late July,” said Dukes.

Dukes said everyone has been working during this time. He said that everyone has been working hard, and the county’s teachers have been doing amazing things. Dukes said May 18 through May 22, employees will be back in the schools to wrap up the school year.

It will be broken up into shift, so everyone is not there at the same time. He said that could change if Ivey changes the stay at home order.

Board member Charles West asked if there have been any recommendations made for the start of next school year.

Dukes said State Superintendent Dr. Eric Mackey recommended that school start after Aug. 20 for students. West also asked if there would be any change to the capacity of classrooms. Dukes said they have not gotten that far yet, but he is sure it will come.

West asked if there were any recommendations made about sports, and Dukes said June 5 will be the first time for sports with no more than 10 people. He said there had to be cleanup and sanitizing done after each session, rather than one at the end of the day.

Students under 12 years old would not be allowed in the schools until July.

Dukes commended everyone within the school system for working hard and doing good work during the pandemic. He also commended local businesses and individuals for their help during this time.

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