Obion County Schools to start Aug. 17

by Barbara Atwill

The Obion County Board of Education met July 29, in a special called meeting, to discuss the school calendar for the 2020-2021 school year starting date and decided to start school on Aug. 17.

“This is not a meeting we wanted to have, but here we are. Whatever decision we make tonight will not please everyone. Our number one concern is our kids, staff and providing a quality education. Over 470, 13% of the student body, have signed up for distance learning. We are supposed to start Aug. 4 for the first day of school,” Tim Watkins, Director of Schools, said.

Numerous messages and conversations with the community, teachers and staff as they move forward have taken place.

The teachers miss their kids, they haven’t seen them since March 16. The teachers want to do their job and teach the kids. The distance learning is putting an extra burden on the teachers this year.

If the schools were to open today, it would be full virtual learning by the end of the week, and the teachers know there is no better form of instruction than face-to-face.

The Board decided to take four professional development days of Sept. 24, Nov. 9, and Feb. 4; fair day of Aug. 25; and five of the 10 snow days used for Aug. 10 through 14.

Students with livestock entries in the fair will still be able to enter and it will be counted as non-school sponsored extra-curricular activities, which are allowed.