Shelton's students visit school one last time

SHELTON — There were no reported problems Monday as elementary school students and staff retrieved personal items from their respective schools, according to interim Superintendent Beth Smith.

Smith made a point to tour each elementary school during pickup hours after learning last week that some teachers were concerned about the plans to allow students and staff to enter the buildings, especially with the coronavirus pandemic that forced building closures is still ongoing.

“No concerns whatsoever witnessed by me or the head of security in our visits to schools,” said Smith.

At the schools, Smith said security officers, the building principals and the police officer at the building all reported things were “smooth and running well.

“Parents expressed thanks for the opportunity and the students seemed happy to walk into their school,” said Smith. “Everyone I saw … employees, parents and students … were masked and following expectations.”

Shelton Education Association President Deb Keller said last week some teachers had expressed concerns over retrieval plans, which extend through the week at different school buildings. Keller said the union has consulted with the Connecticut Education Association regarding the plan, but, at present, the teachers’ contract has not been violated so there is not a grievance.

“If a violation occurred,” Keller said, “we would file a grievance.”

Attempts to reach Keller Monday were unsuccessful.

Procedures for students and families to follow during item retrieval are listed on the school district homepage.

The list of procedures and expectations followed by parents and students, according to Smith, were developed in conjunction with several members of the Shelton Public Schools Health Emergency Planning Committee, including the school district head nurse and city Public Safety Director Michael Maglione.

“School administrators and Shelton public schools security officers will be on hand to facilitate the clean-outs and to ensure that expectations are being adhered to,” said Smith. “As the health and safety of our employees, students, parents and the community are paramount, anyone not following expectations will be asked to leave the facility.”

Smith said social distancing guidelines must be followed while on a school campus, and a limited number of students will be allowed into the building at one time. While in the building, Smith said, people must maintain a 6-foot distance between other individuals. No in-person contact or physical contact of any kind will be allowed.

There is no registration process for students and families. Smith said school security and a police officer will be at each school during the designated times. There will be markings on the sidewalk outside each school to indicate where people in line should stand.

A limited number of students will be allowed in the building at one time, said Smith. There will be security staff at the exit door being used. As students leave, security at the main door will be communicated with to allow more students to enter.

Designated times for each clean-out session are 1 to 3 p.m. only. The remaining schedule calls for pickups for Perry Hill fifth graders, Shelton Intermediate School seventh graders and Shelton High ninth graders on May 19; Perry Hill sixth graders, SIS eighth graders, and SHS 10th graders on May 20; and last calls for Perry Hill and SIS students and pickups for 11th graders and Transition Program students on May 21.

On May 22, elementary schools will hold a last call for those students unable to report during the designated times. SHS seniors will also be able to go to school to collect their belongings.

May 26 will be the last call for SHS and Transition Program students who were unable to report during designated times.