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College Place Public Schools push start date back two weeks

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Davis Elementary in College Place.

The College Place School District has pushed back the first day of school two weeks, from Aug. 24 to Sept 8.

The move was approved at a special board meeting Tuesday night.

This, Superintendent James Fry said, will better allow the district to prepare for the reopening of schools this fall amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We felt this was really a good way to remain flexible during a time that we have a lot of changing information,” Fry said.

“It gives us a chance to slow things down and be as thorough as possible to plan for the full return to school. Schools are really good at being flexible and rolling with things. And we are, but this extra two weeks gives us some extra time to really get some things nailed down.”

The move will also allow the district more time to prepare six new portable classrooms at Davis Elementary that are being built and will be used this fall. The new classrooms will aid in the school’s social-distancing efforts.

Fry said the school is awaiting the arrival of furniture for the new classrooms.

“The extra two weeks gives us a chance to get this all done,” he said.

While the move did require the schools to extend classes later into June next year, Fry said the district was able to come up with a plan to extend the schedule by less than a week.

“We were originally supposed to end on June 10, a Thursday,” he said. “Now we are going to push that to the 15th, which is the following Tuesday. So it’s not pushed back a ton because we really got creative with the calendar in order to work through this challenge.”

Last week, Fry announced the district will fully reopen with students attending school every day for full days.

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Jeremy Burnham can be reached at jeremyburnham@wwub.com or 509-551-8896.

Reporter

Jeremy Burnham covers education and Columbia County for the Union-Bulletin. He is a recent graduate of Eastern Washington University, where he studied journalism, and is an Eastern Eagle fanatic.