Superintendent says open houses will be heavily supervised

Published 5:28 pm Tuesday, August 27, 2019

LaFAYETTE — The Chambers County School District announced this past week that a series of open house events will be held at individual school facilities starting in September.

Such visits will include access to classrooms during student instructional times. Since then, several comments through social media sites have questioned the security of these activities.

“The safety of our students has been, and always will be, our top priority,” Chambers County School District Superintendent Dr. Kelli Hodge said in a news release. “We announced these events more than a month in advance to ensure that every possible precaution was in place regarding student safety.”

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Hodge said all individuals wishing to participate in the school tours will be escorted by administrative staff members and other volunteers during the entire time they are on campus.

They will also be subject to a pre-registration process and must be able to produce photo identification.

“No one will be involved in this process without us knowing who they are, where they’re from, or who they represent,” Hodge said. “There will be no interaction with the students whatsoever. This will be a time of heavily supervised observation only.”

According to the school district, the open house activities were designed to create a different type of experience for people interested in visiting a school classroom during instructional time, to witness first-hand their public education system in action.

“There are exciting things going on every day in each of our schools, including innovative approaches to teaching by an excellent staff of educators,” Hodge said in a news release. “Many businesses and organization throughout our community have graciously provided various forms of support to enhance the learning experience for our students. The open house activities will allow these local stakeholders to see the results of their investment.”

Hodge said invitations are being sent to the district’s Partners in Education and other business, church, and civic groups.

The first open house will be held at 9 a.m. CT, on Tuesday, Sept. 24, at Eastside Elementary School in LaFayette.