Superintendent addresses return to school, activities in new video


Jack Weaver

Empty tables fill the Commons on March 22, the day before St. Louis County leaders issued a stay at home order. On April 9, Superintendent Mark Miles announced that the remainder of the school year would be held online using the ALP.

Vijay Viswanathan

As COVID-19 raged across the globe, in its wake was left widespread school closures and the suspension of all high school athletic programs. The Rockwood community has now begun to ask two very important questions: “Will we be able to go back to school in the fall?” and “When will athletics resume?”

The Rockwood School District (RSD) sent out an email in early June that contained a survey about returning to school in the fall. The results of the survey were released on the RSD website on June 26.

According to the survey, about 74 percent of responses indicated that they would send their child back to school should they re-open in the fall at full capacity. Only about three percent of responses indicated that they would keep their child at home even if the schools re-open at full capacity.

Should full capacity not be possible, reduced capacity is another option. Reduced capacity would only allow a certain number of students to attend school each day. About 85 percent of responses indicated that they were in favor of a reduced capacity model, while only 15 percent were in favor of complete online learning. However, about 22 percent of responses were undecided on whether they wanted their child to return to school or not.

When asked about transportation, 71 percent of responses indicated that they could provide their own transportation so the district could apply social distancing on school busses.

A video was released by RSD which goes into more detail about Rockwood Online, high school athletics and the results of the survey.

In addition to the return to school, activities and athletics are also in question. RSD has made a criteria for when athletics do return in July. Some conditions of this criteria include that all high school athletes are expected to complete a COVID-19 “symptom screener” each day, the number of students at each practice will be limited and all participating athletes are required to arrive dressed for their sport, as locker rooms will not be in use. Spectators are prohibited from attending practices and parents will only be allowed to drop off and pick up their child from practices.

There also will be constant sanitizing of all equipment and the focus will be on non-contact drills, such as individual workouts. More information regarding athletics can be found on Rockwood’s website.

The district plans to release more detailed information regarding re-opening schools in the fall on July 20.