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CPS Looks To Offer Families Learning Options That 'Fit Their Needs'

Families are being sent surveys for CPS to receive feedback on the two options.
Cincinnati Public Schools (screenshot from Mar. 1, 2021 Board Meeting)
Families are being sent surveys for CPS to receive feedback on the two options.

Surveys from Cincinnati Public Schools are being sent to families' homes to see which learning option they would prefer - distance learning or in-person classes five days a week.

The distance learning option on the table would have a child either attending school at the Cincinnati Digital Academy or distance learning through the online platform Schoology.

The other option is to have class in-person five days a week. The in-person option will require mask wearing and other COVID protocols, but social distancing may not be at the CDC recommendation of six feet in some cases. Superintendent Laura Mitchell called the situation a "balancing act."

"The information and data is changing on a regular basis," Mitchell said. "The thresholds are shifting on a regular basis as well. What we can do right now is to offer our families options and choices within our districts that will fit their needs."

Three feet of social distancing has been brought up recently when discussing CPS classrooms. Here's Dr. Maryse Amin with the Cincinnati Health Department:

"There haven't been very many studies that look at that," Amin said. "I think they're comparing the 'three to six' versus the 'six.' I don't know if there are any that can tell us definitively that three feet is OK."

Walnut Hills High School is currently remote due to the social distancing issues the building and class sizes create.

The list of criteria for decisions about in-person learning include the number of in-school transmissions and the implementation of safety protocols, including staff attendance.

Credit Cincinnati Public Schools (screenshot from Mar. 1, 2021 meeting)
Cincinnati Public Schools (screenshot from Mar. 1, 2021 meeting)

Bates' Alleged Comments

One week after a CPS board member asked for grace after a video showed her allegedly making disparaging remarks about parents, another board member is looking to investigate.

In a video, Melanie Bates said she was venting during a private conversation, during which she allegedly said, "I'm so sick of these Walnut Hills people." Referring to teachers, she also allegedly said, "Suck it up and go back to work. They're a bunch of f***ing whiners making 70 to 80 thousand dollars a year." Bates also expressed disappointment in Board Vice President Ryan Messer voting to keep Walnut Hills remote.

Board Member Ben Lindy said he has questions about what exactly was said and the context the statements were made in.

"The allegations feel serious to me and do call into question, I think, what some of our values are as a board," Lindy said.

Board Member Eve Bolton said there is a process to look into the allegations.

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Cory Sharber is a student at Murray State University majoring in journalism and political science. He was born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. Prior to joining WKMS, Cory wrote for the Murray State News as a beat writer for the rifle and tennis teams. When he’s not at WKMS, he typically listens to music, plays guitar, video games, and crams for all of the assignments he puts off.
Cory Sharber
Cory Sharber attended Murray State University majoring in journalism and political science and comes to Cincinnati Public Radio from NPR Member station WKMS.