RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The school board for Richmond Public Schools gave an update on William Fox Elementary and the new George Wythe High School at a meeting Tuesday, Jan. 17.
William Fox Elementary
The board released photos of the inside of Fox Elementary and the proposed design of what the reconstructed school could look like when it’s done. As architects are in the design phase, the board and families are able to get a more concrete look at the possible future of the school.
So far, the architecture firm has finished assessing the condition of the structure, begun the design phase and come up with an estimate of how much reconstruction will cost. The next step for Fox Elementary is to replace the roof.
George Wythe High School
At the new George Wythe High School, adjustments are being made to the kitchen layout based on the board’s feedback. Officials are also wrapping up the plan for parking to include vehicle charging stations and a parent drop-off lane.
The school board agenda also mentioned builders are finishing up the plan for athletic fields, a stadium and bleacher seating at the new George Wythe.
Cell Phone Policy
The board also received an update Tuesday night on the cell phone policy within schools. The Digital Working Group task force has been working to find options to restrict cell phones during the school day to limit distractions.
Superintendent Jason Kamras said the task force recommended the board tighten up enforcement of their current policy and that using cell phones at school is a major distraction.
Kamras said the Digital Working Group recommends that students who repeatedly violate the policy by taking their phones out during school should be the ones to have to put their phones in a pouch. The pouch system is already in place over at Hopewell Schools, and Richmond school board member Mariah White said the policy is also already in place at the Richmond Alternative School.
Kamras said he spoke with the high school advisory last week and they weren’t keen on the idea of limiting students’ access to cell phones. They did say it’s distracting but also mentioned students would most likely contribute to or try and record fights even if their access to cell phones are limited.
The board meeting went on after 10 p.m. last night, so board members moved on, with some mentioning they’d like to hear what parents and students think before they decide on anything.