District pushes back start date by two weeks


CHARLESTON, Ill. (WCIA) — At an emergency meeting this morning, Charleston school board members voted to change the start of the school year by two weeks.

In a post made on the district’s website prior to the meeting, superintendent Todd Vilardo cited the recent uptick to “Orange” level-warning of COVID-19 risk in Coles County.

“Due to this increased risk, especially when considering the approaching return of higher education students to Charleston, school district staff are considering multiple options for beginning our year,” he wrote.

Ultimately, the board voted to start the school year two weeks later than planned, on August 31. The year will start with remote learning.

That decision does add days to the end of the school year: The last day for students will be June 4.

“Our primary aim is to arrive at a decision that represents our best collective efforts in returning to learn with the safety, health and well-being of our students, staff and entire school community as our highest priority,” Vilardo wrote Thursday.

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