By Debra Moore
Plumas Unified high school students will return to the classroom March 1 as planned, though it will look a little differently in one community.
Last month the school board voted to resume in-class instruction for high school students with an a.m./p.m. model. Students would attend school four days — either in a morning or afternoon session.
During the Feb. 10 school board meeting, Portola High School Principal Sara Sheridan asked to implement a different in-class schedule.
Sheridan proposed what she labeled a 2-2-1 model. The student body would be divided into two cohorts. Cohort 1 would attend a full day of classes on Monday and Wednesday; while Cohort 2 would attend full days on Tuesday and Thursday. Fridays would be asynchronous learning as is the case with the other area high schools.
“This provides a sense of normalcy; a full day moving to all six classes,” she said. The full day also would allow the students to have lunch together, with social distancing measures in place.
“Transportation is another component,” she added. Since student who needed transportation could only attend the afternoon session, she said it didn’t allow for flexibility and fairness.
“In the a.m./p.m. model there’s an equity issue,” she said. “There’s also the perception that the a.m. schedule was better” so it was in higher demand.
Sheridan said that the one downside is that this model doesn’t line up with C. Roy Carmichael Elementary, which runs a.m./p.m., but the two principals would work with families that faced issues with the dueling schedules.
School board members Joleen Cline, JoDee Read, Dave Keller, Traci Holt and Leslie Edlund approved Sheridan’s request.