March 13, 2020: BCS Announces Plans for Closure beginning Thursday, March 19, 2020
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- (March 13, 2020) -- Birmingham City Schools (BCS), in conjunction with Gov. Kay Ivey’s newly declared state of emergency surrounding the coronavirus, will close all schools and facilities for students and staff members effective Wednesday, March 18, 2020 at the close of business. The district is anticipated to reopen on Monday, April 6, 2020.
Athletics and extracurricular activities will not occur during the school closure.
The district will excuse all absences for Monday, March 16, 2020 through Wednesday March 18, 2020, if families elect to keep their students at home. BCS reminds families Monday, March 16, 2020 will remain an early dismissal day as previously scheduled.
BCS leaders encourage families to focus on promoting safe and healthy habits within their homes and community.
Birmingham City Schools (BCS) administrators, in support of the Birmingham Board of Education, joined leaders from the City of Birmingham to acknowledge the first confirmed case of the coronavirus (COVID-19) within the state of Alabama. Health officials announced the state's first case was confirmed within Montgomery County this morning.
The city is following guidance from both local and state health officials as well as the Alabama State Department of Education in instructing schools to remain in session.
BCS Superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring and other BCS leaders remain in constant communication with local and state health department officials regarding the situation.
In the Thursday, March 12, 2020 BCS Coronavirus Update, BCS shared its plan for how the district is working to prevent the spread of illness and preventative measures the district is implementing to promote a safe and healthy environment.
BCS is following recommended guidelines in canceling large public gatherings of more than 500 people. Additionally, the district is canceling all domestic and international school-sponsored travel leading up to and during spring break. BCS joined the City of Birmingham in suspending any non-essential travel for employees indefinitely.
The district encourages individuals who are sick to seek immediate medical attention, avoid contact with others, and remain at home and fever free for at least 72 hours free of symptoms without the aid of a fever-reducing medicine.
Visit bhamcityschools.org/coronavirus for additional information, resources and updates.
Preparation and Current Actions
- Engage in daily updates and communication with health officials.
- Provide resources encouraging a healthy environment within schools.
- Communicate district updates to families and staff members regarding the coronavirus using the district’s mass notification system, website and social media platforms.
- Disinfect high impact areas by BCS Custodial staff.
- Monitor actions the community is taking for consistency and safety protocols.
- Cancel all domestic and international school-sponsored travel leading up to and during spring break.
- Suspend any non-essential travel for BCS employees indefinitely.
- Encourage families and staff members to be cautious when planning any travel by viewing the CDC’s COVID-19 risk assessment.
- Review future field trips following spring break.
- Notify families, staff members and media members of any school closings.
- Send direct notifications through School Messenger, the district’s mass notification system, as well as through the Birmingham City Schools App.
- Post updates on the district’s website at www.bhamcityschools.org and on the district’s social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Instruction during School Closure
- In the event district leaders are advised students and staff members should remain at home for an extended period, BCS will implement hybrid instruction consisting of both digital and printed materials depending on technology access to remove barriers for students.
Promoting Health and Safety
- Individuals who are sick should seek immediate medical attention, avoid contact with others, and remain at home and fever free for at least 72 hours free of symptoms without the aid of a fever-reducing medicine.
- For additional steps on preventing the spread of the virus, please view the resources below.
- Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Factsheet: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/2019-ncov-factsheet.pdf
- Traveling FAQ: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/faqs.html
- Home Planning & Prevention Tips: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/index.html
- Steps to Protect Yourself: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fabout%2Fprevention-treatment.html
- LEA Guide from the Alabama Department of Education: https://www.bhamcityschools.org/cms/lib/AL01001646/Centricity/Domain/8828/CORONA_LEA.pdf
- Parent Guide from the Alabama Department of Education: https://www.bhamcityschools.org/cms/lib/AL01001646/Centricity/Domain/8828/CORONA_PARENT.pdf
Large Public Gatherings, Athletics, Extracurriculars and School Events
- BCS is following recommended JCDH guidelines by canceling large public gatherings of more than 500 people.
- BCS is following the recommendations of the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) in determining the status of athletic events.
- Schools will communicate decisions surrounding public events with less than 500 people.
BCS will ensure stakeholders remain informed of any additional updates.
Las Escuelas de la Ciudad de Birmingham anuncia planes de cierre a partir del jueves 19 de marzo de 2020
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama - (13 de marzo del 2020) - Las Escuelas de la Ciudad de Birmingham (BCS), en conjunto con el estado de emergencia recientemente declarado por la gobernadora Kay Ivey en torno al coronavirus, cerrarán todas las escuelas e instalaciones para estudiantes y miembros del personal al término de clases del dia miércoles , 18 de marzo del 2020. Se espera que el distrito vuelva a abrir el lunes 6 de abril del 2020.
El atletismo y las actividades extracurriculares también estarán suspendidas durante el cierre de la escuela.
El distrito justificara todas las inasistencias para el lunes 16 de marzo de 2020 hasta el miércoles 18 de marzo del 2020, para todas las familias eligan mantener a sus estudiantes en casa. BCS les recuerda a las familias que el lunes 16 de marzo del 2020 seguirá siendo un día de salida temprana como se había programado previamente.
Los líderes de BCS invitan a las familias a centrarse en promover hábitos seguros y saludables dentro de sus hogares y comunidad. El distrito proporcionará actualizaciones adicionales relacionadas con el coronavirus en www.bhamcityschools.org/coronavirus.