RPS school board to discuss emergency childcare options with virtual learning starting next week

Education

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – The Richmond School Board will meet Monday night to discuss options for emergency childcare as schools remain closed to in-person learning.

Earlier this month, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney announced $3 million in CARES Act funding would be used for childcare support for Richmond Public Schools students, and school officials are expected to make recommendations at the meeting Monday night.

In a presentation posted on the school board website, 60 percent of the more than 1,300 respondents said they don’t have childcare in place.

The recommendation expected from Superintendent Jason Kamras is to use five RPS schools for emergency care. Those schools would be MLK, Holton, Huguenot, Miles Jones and Blackwell.

The presentation cites ‘these are five of our more modern facilities, which makes them well-suited for this purpose.’

According to the presentation, the recommendation is contingent on a few things:

• Two thirds of the seats would be made available at no cost to children who qualify for SNAP, TANF, or Medicaid.
• Children of essential workers would be prioritized.
• Providers would be required to follow all the health protocols RPS outlined earlier this summer when planning for in-person instruction.
• The five facilities would be open to any provider that has the capacity to run childcare in accordance with our health
protocols.
• RPS would not provide transportation, as we will be using our entire bus fleet for meal distribution each morning.
• No RPS staff and supplies would be used.
• The five sites would receive a deep-cleaning at no cost to RPS once the childcare is no longer needed.
• RPS would assume no liability for infection or other negative outcomes from the administration of the centers.

The school board meetings at 6 p.m.

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