Return to Headlines

District reveals Return to School plans

Spearman approves Rock Hill Schools’ reopening plan

State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman has approved Rock Hill Schools’ reopening plan that offers students and families a choice between in-person and virtual instruction to start the 2020-2021 school year, which begins Tuesday, September 8.


"School district leaders, working alongside their local communities, continue to put forward high quality options for parents that take into account the academic and social needs of students along with the safety precautions and protocols required in the current pandemic environment," said Spearman.


Spearman added a plea to everyone to help with district’s reopening efforts by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, washing hands regularly, and staying at home when sick. Rock Hill Schools Superintendent Dr. Bill Cook has echoed Spearman’s call for cooperation as the district continues to work toward safely opening for the district’s students and staff.


As required by the South Carolina Department of Education, Rock Hill’s plan includes a 100% virtual option for families. Nearly 40% (6,672) of the district’s students have applied to attend the Rock Hill Schools Virtual Academy. This new learning model will provide face-to-face teacher-led instruction via live-streaming and digital coursework through computer-based platforms. Unlike remote learning, which was implemented during the emergency shutdown last spring, students in the Virtual Academy will follow a schedule just as they would in a traditional brick and mortar school. 


“The development of a virtual program is not only a good fit for families who remain concerned about the COVID-19 pandemic, but also for those who simply enjoy the benefits of learning from home, while still having access to certified teachers and a challenging curriculum,” said Cook.


Dr. Cook also stated that “the goal of the district is to keep our students, employees, and community safe while returning students in our traditional schools to full-time in-person instruction. Superintendent Spearman commended Rock Hill Schools in her letter to Cook for the district’s commitment to a safety first approach while providing students and parents with high-quality instruction.


Whether participating in the Virtual Academy or in a brick and mortar building on the C/A/B schedule, students will have the opportunity to participate in school clubs and organizations, as well as athletics and other co-curricular programs such as band and chorus. Additionally, district leaders have devised a plan to continue feeding students when not physically present on campus or while attending the Virtual Academy.


To view the district’s Return to School – A Safe Reopening Plan for Students & Staff, please click here.

To view Dr. Cook’s most recent video message to the Rock Hill community, please click here.