NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As the holiday season comes to a close, students are gearing up to return to school amid a COVID-19 surge.
Metro Nashville Public Schools is getting ready for students to come back as planned on Friday. They are reminding staff that state law keeps the district from going remote.
"The only exceptions are for students who are isolated/quarantined due to COVID-19 or for specific schools/classrooms due to their unique circumstances, which requires approval from the Commissioner of Education. So, to be clear, switching the district to remote learning during this wave is not an option, and closing schools is not an option without extending the school year into the summer," an email to staff said.
But, the district is allowing school-based staff to work remotely for the next few days ahead of the return from winter break.
The district said they will be following new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for quarantine and isolation for students and staffers who test positive.
Students who are close contacts do not have to quarantine, but MNPS said they should monitor symptoms and think about getting tested five days after exposure.
The district said it will have almost 50,000 more tests arriving in the coming weeks.
The district is offering testing at McGavock High School Tuesday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. It is free for staff and students. You will need to wear a mask and have an ID badge.
If a school-aged child needs a test but doesn't have an MNPS ID, they can get one.— Metro Schools (@MetroSchools) January 3, 2022
When it comes to masks, MNPS said those are still required.
"Finally, as a reminder, masks are still required for all students, staff, and visitors in our school buildings based on MNPS Board policy and in concurrence with a federal court order. Over the next few weeks will be distributing KN95 masks to schools for staff to use as needed," an email to staff said.