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New Orleans school leaders preparing for new normal when students return, what to do if they can't

“I think we’ve done an excellent job of responding to a crisis overnight."

NEW ORLEANS — New Orleans schools are looking ahead to what classes will look like when students can return and what to do in the Fall if they can’t.

Dr. Henderson Lewis, Superintendent of New Orleans Public Schools (NOLA-PS), joined Paul Dudley on the Eyewitness Morning News Sunday to talk about what the Fall could look like for students.

“When schools reopen it probably will not look like what we saw in previous school years,” Lewis said. “We’ve been working with our school leaders to prepare for a school year … How we will limit gatherings in schools, how we will reduce the number of students in a classroom at a time. How we will make sure that students are coming into schools, how we’re doing wellness checks and (checking) temperatures.”

As for when students may return, there is no official date yet, but Lewis said that students could return slightly earlier than usual to make up for time lost this current schools year.

More remote learning is also on the table.

“At the end of the day, this guidance will come from the state and local level and we’re doing out best to be prepared,” Lewis said.

NOLA-PS is also looking into hiring licensed physicians to be on campus as a resource for students and teachers, according to Lewis.

The superintendent noted that teachers, parents and students did a great job of reacting and switching to the new system of remote learning on the fly, but said now is the time to fine tune the system and make sure every student is getting the care they need to succeed in school.

“I think we’ve done an excellent job of responding to a crisis overnight,” Lewis said. “Now as we prepare for the long haul and brand new school year we want to make sure that we work through these gaps.”

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