The first day of school is exciting. Whether boarding a big yellow bus or powering up a computer at home, the return to class marks a fresh start.
This school year brings with it unique learning environments, modified schedules and new ways for kids to learn and grow. To help parents navigate the new school year, the 8News team created a guide for going back to school.
In our Back to School HQ you’ll find information for each local school district that we’ll continue to update through the start of school. We’ve also collected stories from families across the area who are preparing to go back to school, and we hope that you will share ideas and tips with us to ensure classrooms, homes and anywhere our children learn are ready for the first day.
And of course, there’s one back-to-school tradition that remains the same regardless of where classes are held. We still expect to see your first-day photos, even if you take them in the living room instead of at the bus stop.
TIME FOR CLASS
Remote learning presents unique — and similar — challenges for English learners Online learning poses several challenges for students and families, especially those who are not fluent in English. While local school districts have released plans that provide support and resources for their English Learners during remote learning, some acknowledge that in-person learning “typically delivers the best possible environment” for ELs.
Richmond Public Schools’ Welcome Center assists students, families who speak English as a second language
The virtual start of school is right around the corner and many parents still need in-person help, including those whose children speak English as a second language.
Concerned about virtual learning? Tips on how to support kids at home
Following the decision from most Central Virginia school districts that the first nine weeks of the academic year will be remote, it’s easy for parents to feel overwhelmed with how to best support their children.
Academics, self care and social time: How to get your kids ready for the first day of (virtual) school
The school experience will be different this year for Virginia kids as many school systems have decided on a virtual start or school year. With the upcoming changes, how should parents get their families ready to go back to school?
For Chesterfield family, homeschool could be in the future for all of their kids
The Tyree’s have four children and their first three started public school when they were 5 years old. But with their youngest entering Kindergarten, they’ve decided to keep her home.
Tax-free shopping weekend in Virginia is Aug. 7-9: Here’s what you need to know
During the weekend, you won’t have to pay sales tax and can save when buying school supplies, clothing, shoes and emergency preparedness items.
Broadband internet access key for Central Virginia students returning to school virtually in the fall
With area schools getting ready to return to school virtually this fall, the topic of virtual learning and the availability of broadband access has become increasingly important.
Learning to a new tune: How band will be taught virtually in Richmond Public Schools
Whether your child is picking up their brass, woodwind or stringed instrument for the first time or the hundredth, they will learn how to play and grow virtually with their music directors
What’s in the cart? Back-to-school shopping may look different for virtual learning
With some local school boards approving virtual starts to the upcoming fall semester, parents may begin to wonder, “Which items will end up in the cart for this year’s back-to-school shopping?
Chesterfield mom of four feeling positive about virtual learning for the fall
To embrace their new learning environment, she set up individual stations in her home for each of her girls to do their work during the school year. And although she says it isn’t ideal, the stations will make their new learning environment work for as long as they can.
LOCAL SCHOOL DISTRICTS
Chesterfield County Public Schools
Chesterfield County students will return to school virtually in the fall. Students will learn from home and teachers will lead virtually from their classrooms. The school year starts on Tuesday, Sep. 8, or Wednesday, Sep. 9, depending on grade.
Charles City Public Schools Charles City County Public Schools is still working to finalize their return to school plans. Their 2020-2021 school year will begin on Sept. 8
Colonial Heights Public Schools
Some students in Colonial Heights will return virtually in the fall while others learn from home. Families can choose the plan that work best for their student. Schools begins on Tuesday, Sep. 8.
Dinwiddie County Public Schools Dinwiddie County Schools is providing families with the choice between virtual or hybrid learning this fall. Students enrolled in the hybrid option will attend face-to-face classes two days a week. The school year begins in Dinwiddie on Tuesday, Sep. 8.
Goochland County Public Schools
Goochland School Superintendent Dr. Raley is expected to recommend that the school board reconsider the county’s reopening plan that was approved in July. The first day of school will remain Monday, Aug. 24.
Hanover County Public Schools
Hanover County students will return to school this fall with a hybrid plan that allows parents to choose in-person or virtual learning. Both choices will include five days a week of instruction and parents can change their plan choice at the end of the semester. The school year starts on Tuesday, Sep. 8.
Henrico County Public Schools
Henrico County students will learn virtually for the first nine weeks of the 2020-21 school year. Limited personal instruction will be made available for some students, and teachers have the option to teach from their classrooms. The first day of school is Tuesday, Sep. 8.
Hopewell City Public Schools Hopewell is delaying the start of their school year to Sept. 8. The first nine weeks of school will be held in a fully virtual format. Their website states they initially hoped to offer a choice between a hybrid and virtual model but decided that face-to-face learning is unrealistic at this time.
New Kent County Public Schools New Kent County Public Schools currently has six working groups to develop a plan for the fall. According to planning documents, New Kent is considering some virtual instruction, at home learning for at risk students and faculty, staggered schedules and daily health screenings. The first day of school will be Sept. 8.
Petersburg City Public Schools
Students in the City of Petersburg will start school virtually this fall and the plan will be reevaluated after the first nine weeks. The school year starts in Petersburg on Tuesday, Sep. 8.
Powhatan County Public Schools
When students return to school in Powhatan County this fall they will choose between virtual learning or in-person learning two days a week. The first day of school is Monday, Aug. 24.
Prince George County Public Schools Prince George County Public Schools is offering families the choice between virtual and in-person learning. Parents had until last week to submit their choice of learning method. If families select the virtual schooling option the student will remain in virtual learning for the entire fall semester. Prince George’s first day of school is Sept. 8.
Richmond Public Schools
Students in the City of Richmond will attend virtually for the first semester of the school year. Teachers will lead classes from their homes or locations outside of their classrooms. School starts in Richmond on Tuesday, Sep. 8.