CABOT, Ark. — Dr. Tony Thurman, Superintendent of Cabot Public School District, has been in education for over 30 years. He said dealing with school in a pandemic has been a learning experience.
"I did not have a course on how to handle something like this," he said. "Every district is figuring this out as we go and it's like building this airplane in flight."
Dr. Thurman said the Cabot Public School District is working hard to make this year a success as the majority of their students say they are heading back to in person classes.
"When we first closed, we had 10,600 students on campus and as of today, we have 1,450 students that are doing all digital and not coming to campus," he said.
Dr. Thurman said Cabot Public School District's priority is safety on campus.
"We've decided to do Pre-K to 12th grade with face coverings but we will be flexible with that," he said. "We know it's impossible to wear those all day, every day."
The district is also focused on getting students, teachers, and staff the resources to succeed in any class setting.
"When we open, every student will have their own Chromebook this year which is the first time the district has been one to one for those," said Dr. Thurman. "We've also appreciated the state providing wireless hot spots and our district will receive 300 of those."
Dr. Thurman said they have been focused on training and professional devleopment for teachers.
"We want to make sure they have every opportunity to become as well versed as possible to teach remotely," he said.
Dr. Thurman also said Cabot School District is committed to keeping the joy in education even during tough times.
"We want to make sure it's still fun and school is a positive place," he said. "We don't want it to feel like an institution."
He said they also want parents to stand alongside Cabot Public School District offering advice and support as we all venture into totally new territory.
"We're really trying to work through parents and understand that if students come to school in either setting and it's not working, we are going to be fluid in this," he said. "Our two words are flexibility and patience."
For more information about district plans, visit their website.