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The Athens Community Career Academy building at 440 Dearing Ext. in Athens, Georgia on Friday, May 29, 2020. The Clarke County Board of Education holds its in-person meetings here, though meetings are now virtual due to COVID-19. (Photo/Taylor Gerlach)

Students and teachers in the Clarke County School District might have to wait a few more weeks before starting school this fall.

The CCSD Board of Education will vote on delaying the first day of school during Thursday’s special called meeting. The start date is currently scheduled for Aug. 3.

District 2 representative Antwon Stephens said he requested a special meeting on July 7. One day after reiterating his idea during a July 9 meeting, the board voted to hold a meeting this Thursday.

“From what I heard at the last meeting, it was very encouraging that everyone seemed to finally be on one page that we need to slow things down,” Stephens said. “The plans were released very fast. It just needed a little more involvement and a slower process. I feel very confident at this point that we’re moving in the right direction.”

CCSD families have an option between virtual and traditional in-person learning this fall. The deadline to select a preference has been postponed until a start date has been approved, according to an email sent to parents Tuesday.

School districts across the nation are trying to make decisions regarding the reopening of school amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In Atlanta, the school board tentatively agreed on Monday to push back its start date from Aug. 10 to Aug. 24. The board still needs to give final approval of the calendar change in its August meeting.

Students enrolled in Atlanta Public Schools will learn virtually for the first nine weeks, according to a plan from superintendent Lisa Herring.

Quitman County, a rural area in southwest Georgia, will have a phased reopening where students will learn virtually until at least Oct. 13.

CCSD parents were asked in a recent survey if they wanted to start on Aug. 3, Aug. 17 or Sept. 8. The results have yet to be announced. If the start of the school year were to be pushed back, the end date of May 20 wouldn’t be affected, according to the survey. Holidays and conference days, however, may need to be adjusted.

More information can be found on CCSD’s website.

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