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Warren Schools face challenges of bringing students back, and opening new school

Published: Aug. 21, 2020 at 5:41 PM EDT
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VINCENT, Ohio (WTAP) -

Warren Local Schools superintendent Kyle Newton has had plenty on his plate since schools had to shut down last March.

He says, since July 4th, his dedicated staff has been working almost around the clock, to train and learn safety protocols ahead of reopening the school district to students on August 24.

“My central administration team, my principals, my admin team, and teacher leaders have been in a dead sprint,” said Newton. “Having them to the point where we’re right now, going and almost to the finish line, it’s a feeling of reward and validation at this point.”

Mask-wearing protocols remain the same at Warren Local Schools as other districts in Washington County. All students and staff members must wear masks or face coverings whenever they are in the building.

Health checks at home from parents are vital to keeping kids and faculty safe and healthy this year.

“We want parents to keep kids home when they are sick,” Newton said. “If your kid wakes up, and they have a fever, keep them home. It’s better to keep them home for one day or two days, rather than having them come to school and then having to go through the COVID-like protocols, because that’s just no fun for anyone.”

The biggest challenge the district faces is having the brand new Warren Elementary School building complete and ready for students by September 21.

Newton knows that this will be a challenge for everyone at first, but when he has showed the building to staff members, they have expressed heavy emotions.

“From what we had last year, what we’ve had from the last so many years dealing with, it’s unbelievable,” said Newton. “When I walk my staff through, and they’re getting to see tours, and literally people tear up, it’s just amazing what it will do for our community.”

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