New Hanover County Schools COVID-19 Update for March 25

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NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (News Release) — On Monday, March 23, Governor Cooper amended Executive Order 117 to extend public school closures through May 15. This closure includes all before and after-school programs and pre-K programs. NHCS continues to follow guidance outlined by the State of North Carolina, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the NC Division of Public Health.

“In light of the Governor’s announcement, New Hanover County Schools is establishing baseline operations and procedures to support staff and students during this extended closing,” says NHCS Interim Superintendent Dr. Del Burns. “ We’re making thoughtful, collaborative decisions and scaling up to support staff development and training, remote learning opportunities, and continued community services like our meal service program.”

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Learning Continuity

The NHCS Division of Instruction and Academic Accountability is developing a plan for learning continuity, including online resources and print materials for supplemental and new learning in grades K-12, Career Technical Education, Special Education, and Early Childhood Services.

March 24-March 31 have been designated training and development dates for teachers.  April 1 has been designated as a launch date for all courses, with teachers focusing on assessing student access, orientation, and reconnecting with students and families through April 3.



Spring Break

For traditional calendars, Spring Break will remain on April 6 through April 13. Spring Break remains unchanged at this time on other calendars.

Meal Service

The Monday-Friday NHCS Meal Program continues to be offered at 14 meal service sites from 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. and one pre-order, pick-up site at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Carolina Beach starting at 11:30 a.m. Meals include lunch for that day and breakfast for the following morning. Verification of the meals being distributed to children 18 years or younger is required and parents and/or guardians may pick up meals.

Beginning Monday, March 30, NHCS will expand the program to 20 school sites and bus delivery to over 50 neighborhood sites. Meals can be pre-ordered up to a week in advance online, through an app, or by phone. Volunteer organizations assisting in meal delivery will also be able to pre-order bulk meals up to a week in advance.

NHCS appreciates the community’s supportive response to this program and the numerous volunteer groups, including the Latino Alliance, Nourish NC, and Operation Ring and Run, that are working to ensure meal services are available throughout New Hanover County.

Facilities & Building Access

New Hanover County Schools is following federal and state guidance and limiting in-person meetings and facility use in confined spaces to less than 10 people.

Currently, all NHCS schools and administrative buildings will only be open to the public between the hours of 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Exceptions may be made at the discretion of the principal or building manager. Individuals needing to conduct business at a NHCS facility are encouraged to call facilities ahead of time to determine if their concerns can be addressed over the phone. Student instructional packets will continue to be available during this time at all schools. Meal service will continue to be available for pick up at identified sites from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Beginning Monday, March 30, all schools and facilities will be closed to the public except by appointment and at the discretion of the principal. Drive-through meal services will continue at designated sites from 11:00 a.m-1:00 p.m. Electronic device distribution will begin on Monday, and pick-up procedures vary by school. School principals and staff will be in touch with families with school-specific instructions.

Playground, Play Structure & Athletic Field Access

Effective Wednesday, March 25, all NHCS playgrounds, athletic fields, and play structures are closed to the public to promote social distancing. This includes athletic fields at Edwin A. Anderson Elementary and athletic fields and softball and baseball complexes at Eugene Ashley High School.

HS Electronic Device Pick-Up

The distribution of electronic devices to high school students for remote instruction will begin on Monday, March 30. Electronic device pick-up procedures vary by school. High School principals and staff will be in touch with families with school-based instructions.

Student Assignment

Kindergarten Lottery for Year-Round and Magnet Schools

Letters will be mailed by April 30, 2020 notifying the parents of those students who have been selected in the initial Kindergarten lottery draw at the year-round and magnet schools. Students who are chosen in the lottery must return a form within five (5) calendar days to accept this year. The accept/decline form will only be accepted by email, fax, or US Mail.

Date Change for Open Choice Applications and Letters to Parents:

The deadline for open choice applications has been changed from April 3 to April 17.  Open choice applications are available on the NHCS webpage, NHCS.net under Registration Forms.  Open choice applications may only be emailed, faxed or sent via US Mail by April 17, 2020. The email address, fax number, and mailing address are listed on the open choice application.