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WMCTC Planning a Full Opening
Written by Bradley Schlegel, Staff Writer
2020-07-28

            Administrators at the Western Montgomery Career and Technology Center are working to offer its students in-person instruction five days a week. School officials hope to provide it regardless of the schedule offered by each student's school district, according to information posted on the WMCTC website.

           The unique size and space available at the school – located at 77 Graterford Road in Limerick – will allow for every classroom and lab to have six feet of social distancing with current enrollment, according to a July 24 letter to students, parents, staff and community from Christopher E. Moritzen, the facility's Administrative Director.

            It states that students of the Upper Perkiomen School District will be able to attend the school regardless of the schedule implemented by UPSD administrators.

"We recognize the importance of the hands-on portion of our curriculum and we are doing everything possible to ensure students can take advantage of the training we offer," Moritzen wrote in the document, posted on the school's website.

            The plan, which includes a blended learning model, has not yet been approved by the school's Joint Operating Committee, according to the letter.  A Frequently Asked Questions fact sheet on the site states that the frequency of in-person instruction would vary depending on the program that the student is enrolled in.

            Approximately 220 students from the Upper Perk have enrolled in technology center – which also serves the Spring-Ford and Pottsgrove school districts – for the upcoming year, according to Nicole Gum, Upper Perkiomen's Communication Specialist. She said those students will be addressed in the district's final health and safety plan.

            According to Gum, the plan is to bus its students to the Western Center as usual. She wrote that the district will utilize the same safety protocols on those buses as on its regular runs during the 2020-21 school year.

            According to the fact sheet, a full opening is possible because the technical school would have no more than 350 students in the building on any given day, and that each classroom is attached to large labs, which will be utilized during theory lessons so that each student has at least six feet of distance. Masks will be required in the hallways, lunch lines and when people are not able to remain socially distant.

            Each Western Center classroom is equipped with restrooms, sinks and hand sanitizing stations. The students do not transition to other classrooms, thus reducing the risk of contact spread.

            The school is in the process of ordering face shields and masks for students and staff. However, the students and staff will be expected to provide their own face coverings, according to the fact sheet.

            For students and parents that deem every day, in-person instruction too risky, the school expects to offer a blended learning model. The frequency of in-person instruction would vary depending on the program that the student is enrolled in. Those who are participating in remote learning at home will have the option to come to a brick and mortar environment every day, according to the fact sheet.


 

 

 

 

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