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Back to school plan debated at OPS board meeting

Posted at 10:34 PM, Jul 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-21 15:52:39-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The pandemic forced many area schools to make their own plans on how to hold classes in the fall. Omaha Public Schools were among a handful of districts meeting on this topic tonight.

Dozens of people spoke out about the district's family 3/2 plan, which separates students by last name.

A-K would attend classes in person Monday and Tuesday while L-Z attends Thursday and Fridays with the groups alternating on Wednesdays.

Some people even came to protest against it before the meeting started. A few protesters were asked to leave and one woman was escorted out for refusing to wear a mask inside the meeting.

One parent said she feels kids deserve a 5-day school week and that she's worried about how the plan will impact single parents.

“This 3/2 plan is detrimental to our children, our families and our community and it's not acceptable,” said parent Reggean Simmons.

We also heard from other people who said it's still not safe enough for students or teachers to return back to the classroom.

“I'm here to say that reopening physical schools would be an act of violence. Children, especially children from families in poverty, will die preventable deaths if schools are reopened as planned,” said Annika Ellefson, whose partner is an OPS teacher.

A couple of parents who spoke up acknowledged that there is no perfect plan, but many still urged the district to consider other options.

Several former and current students spoke at the meeting as well, calling for a number of changes including seeing more diverse honors and AP classes across the district.