HCS Reentry and Continuous Learning Plan

In this first episode we talk about the phases that we are in and what we could be in throughout this school year. To be sure you get notified each time we post a new episode, please subscribe to our Youtube channel and turn on notifications.

School Board Presentation


Hamilton County Schools launched the School Reopening Task Force to plan for the safe reopening of schools for the 2020-2021 school year on August 12. The task force, which includes parents, students, community leaders, health professionals, teachers, school administrators, and district leaders, will meet regularly over the summer to plan for the safe return to school.

The Task Force has been working diligently to determine the best plan for reopening schools, and has completed the HCS Reentry and Continuous Learning Plan.

Phased Approach to Reentry

The plan uses a phased approach to reentry, that includes data-driven and safety-minded gating criteria. The aim of this approach is, first and foremost, to protect the health and wellbeing of our students and staff, while mitigating the likelihood of COVID-19 exposure, and maximizing opportunities for learning.

Phase 1: Risk of spreading COVID-19 is significant. Requires Significant Mitigation.

All schools are closed. Students not physically attending school and are completing coursework through remote learning. HCS is prepared to support students’ well-being and academic development remotely for an extended period of time.

Phase 2: Risk of spreading COVID-19 is moderate but increasing. Requires Moderate Mitigation.

Reduced on-campus hours for all schools, with two days per week of face-to-face instruction for each student. Students will work remotely the remaining three days of the week, resulting in a hybrid learning model. Short-term closure procedures (remote learning) will occur for COVID-19 affected buildings. Phase 2 health and safety guidelines are in place.

Phase 3: Risk of spreading COVID-19 is minimal. Requires Minimal Mitigation.

Schools are open; however, short-term closure procedures will occur for COVID-19 affected buildings. These short-term closures may be followed by reopening with reduced on-campus hours (moving between remote and hybrid learning). Phase 3 health and safety guidelines are in place.

Phase 4: No risk of community transmission of COVID-19. Requires No Mitigation.

All schools are open. Curriculum delivered on campus via face-to-face instruction, with blended learning strategies that integrate digital resources. HCS will monitor and be prepared to react to identification of COVID-19 positive tests that affect staff members or students. Additional health and safety guidelines may be enacted in consultation with the Health Department.

Gating Criteria for Phases

The key gating criteria to determine which phase we are in is the number active cases as a percent of total residents in Hamilton County. The Hamilton County Health Department defines active cases and publishes the total number each day between 3-4PM.

View the Spanish Version of the following infographic.

Infographic: Proposed HCS Phase Thresholds &  Gating Criteria, Phase Thresholds & Considerations

Learning Options

The plan also offers several learning options for Hamilton County Schools families including face-to-face instruction and full-time remote learning through HCSatHome..

View the Spanish Version of the following infographic.

Infographic: Family Options for the 2020-2021 School Year


HCS Reentry and Continuous Learning Plan


The district has broken the HCS Reentry and Continuous Learning Plan draft into sections for the public to review and provide feedback. View the sections of the plan below:

Info graphic: School Reopening and HCS Continuous Learning Plan

Health & Safety Plan

Academic Plan

Whole Child Supports Plan

Operations: Buildings, Transportation, School Nutrition, Sports & Extracurriculars, Childcare Plan

Communications Plan

Professional Development & Training Plan

School Reopening Panel Discussion

On Thursday, June 25, 2020, the Task Force hosted a School Reopening Panel Discussion to answer questions about the process for developing the reentry plan.

The presentation and livestream are available below.

School Reopening Panel Discussion Presentation (.pdf)