DETROIT – In-person instruction has been put on hold for K-12 schools in Michigan since the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic hit in March.
As COVID-19 cases increased at a rapid pace again in July and into August, school districts are deciding how -- and if -- they will resume in-person classes in the fall.
- July 23, 2020 -- CDC releases new coronavirus guidelines for schools
The process for reopening schools amid the pandemic has been widely debated, and there is no one final ruling on how it should be handled -- however, we do know that the onus is on states and individual school districts to determine what the upcoming school year will look like.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released guidelines for reopening K-12 schools and child care programs, though the federal government initially disagreed with their suggestions before amendments were made in July. U.S. President Donald Trump and his administration have been pushing for schools to reopen in the fall while health officials are worried that it may not be safe.
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said in a Facebook post that she will “not send our kids and our education workforce into our schools unless it is safe to do so, plain and simple.”
Whitmer released her own guidelines on June 30 meant to help schools prepare for the upcoming academic year. The Return to School Roadmap requires all school districts to develop learning plans for the six coronavirus phases identified under the MI Safe Start Plan.
Most of the state is currently in “Phase 4″ of the plan, meaning that in-person instruction will be allowed but with a number of restrictions in place to ensure safety. Regions experiencing phases 1-3 of the plan cannot offer in-person learning at all. Regions experiencing phases 5-6 can also offer traditional in-person learning with fewer protocols in place.
All Michigan school districts are required to finalize plans for the academic year that follow state guidelines and have them approved by their board of education in August.
Most districts have not finalized reopening plans for their K-12 schools, but rather have shared some details on what students and families can expect in the fall. Below is a compiled list of some of the most populated school districts in Michigan and what they have shared about their reopening plans so far.
Note: This list is not comprehensive and will continue to grow and change as school districts announce or alter their plans for the upcoming school year. Some districts identified below may have privately announced fall plans without publicly sharing that information online.
Allen Park Public Schools
Allen Park Public Schools will be offering virtual learning to start the school year.
“After great care and thoughtful consideration, we have determined that the best course of action is to utilize the delayed in person instruction and begin the school year with the remote learning component of our Return to School Plan for the start of the 2020-21 school year,” reads a statement from the district on Aug. 11. “In-person learning for the 2020-21 school year will temporarily begin in a remote learning environment, starting on Wednesday, September 2. Our vision is to transition back to in-person learning as conditions allow. We will continue to monitor health protocols and data around COVID-19 transmissions in our local area. At this time, we anticipate being in the remote environment through October 2.”
View the districts official “Return to Learning” plan.
District website: www.allenparkschools.com
Anchor Bay School District
The Anchor Bay Board of Education met and voted on Aug. 11. They decided to offer two options for the fall of 2020. Parents will have an option of In-Person K-12 School or the Anchor Bay Virtual Academy – a 100% Remote Option, the district said.
Ann Arbor Public Schools
Ann Arbor Public Schools have announced that the upcoming school year will begin entirely online.
District officials said in a meeting on July 22 that they do not feel it is safe to return to in-person learning in the fall amid the coronavirus pandemic -- so a virtual learning option will be offered instead.
Officials said that students can expect to alternate between in-person and virtual learning when it becomes safe to do so.
Online classes are expected to begin by Sept. 8. The plan should be reviewed, and likely approved, by the board of education on July 29.
Bay City School District
On Aug. 10, the Bay City Board of Education approved a full remote (online) start to the 2020-2021 school year. The beginning of the school year has been moved to September 1, 2020. The district said it would spend the next two weeks preparing students and staff for this transition.
Officials expect to announce a formal plan for the fall in late July or early August.
Berkley School District
Berkley Schools will begin the school year online through at least October 30, 2020. The district says to visit the Return to School website for more details and FAQs.
Birmingham Public Schools
Birmingham Public Schools announced they will be starting the school year remotely.
The decision to continue online learning or to switch to in-person learning will be made on Nov. 1.
Bloomfield Hills Schools
Bloomfield Hills Schools announced they are beginning the school year remotely out of caution starting Sep. 8.
More information can be found on the district’s page -- click here for the latest information.
Brighton Area Schools
Brighton Area Schools district officials have decided to return to in-person classes. Students will go to in-person classes for four days a week, then do remote learning one day a week.
Caledonia Community Schools
Caledonia Community Schools have plans for in-person, virtual and hybrid instruction that will be dependent upon the state’s identified “phase” in the pandemic.
View the plan here.
Detailed information was shared in a video on the district’s page -- click here for more information.
Chippewa Valley Schools
Chippewa Valley Schools will offer in-person instruction, complete online instruction, a combination of both or offering optional online instruction.
Clarkston Community School District
The Clarkston Community School District is planning to being the school year with virtual learning only.
Officials say the “Clarkston Virtual” online education program is available to all district students, who can opt into the virtual learning at any point in the school year.
The district says plans are being developed for various scenarios, including for in-person or online instruction, or a hybrid of both.
Clawson Public Schools
Clawson Public Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year, but say a 100 percent virtual learning option will be available to students in the fall.
Families and students will have the option of online-only instruction starting in the fall, but officials say students will have to commit to this option until at least January 2021. Students won’t be able to alternate between in-person and online instruction after opting for the virtual learning program.
Those interested in the virtual learning option are asked to notify their school by July 29.
Officials are optimistic that in-person learning will be offered at elementary schools in the district, but say that may be more difficult for the middle and high schools.
The district said on July 6 that detailed plans are in the works and will be announced in the coming weeks.
Davison Community Schools
Davison Community Schools say they are pushing back the start of the 2020-21 school year until after Labor Day.
“Our intention is for all students to begin school on Tuesday, September 8, for face-to-face and/or online learning,” reads a statement from the district.
Dearborn Heights School District #7
The Dearborn Heights School District is offering a hybrid option for students in the fall. They offer a “learning choice change form” for parents to fill out.
Dearborn Public Schools
Dearborn Public Schools say that an online-only learning option will be offered to students in the fall. The district says K-12 students can choose to enroll in their Virtual Learning Academy for the 2020-2021 school year. Schools will also offer optional in-school learning labs for more support.
Middle and high school students enrolling in the district’s Virtual Learning Academy can expect to spend 30 hours a week on school work. Elementary students are expected to spend about 20-30 hours a week on school work.
Signing up for the Virtual Learning Academy is a yearlong commitment -- students will not have the option to switch to in-person learning until after the 2020-2021 school year.
All classes are scheduled to begin on Aug. 31. The district expects to announce finalized plans for the upcoming school year the week of Aug. 11.
Detroit Public Schools Community District
Detroit Public Schools Community District has released a Board of Education-approved plan for the upcoming school year.
The district has prepared for in-person, online and hybrid learning options for the fall. Learning options will be implemented based upon the region’s coronavirus “phase” at the time of reopening.
Officials say classrooms will have a maximum capacity of 20 students per class.
The district will offer a full-time virtual option for any students interested. Officials expect a large percentage of registered students will elect to participate in the virtual learning program in the fall.
Farmington Public Schools
On Aug. 11, the Board of Education voted 5-2 to start the 2020-2021 school year remotely. The Board of Education approved the following recommendation in a 5-2 vote:
- Start the 2020-21 school year (for all K-12 students) in Learning at a Distance (fully remote).
- Learning at a Distance (fully remote) will be in place for all students K-12 at least through October 30, 2020.
Farmington Public Schools first announced different instruction plans dependent upon the region’s phase in Whitmer’s MI Safe Restart Plan when school resumes in the fall.
Officials say that if the region is in Phase 5, the schools will offer in-person instruction. Farmington schools will offer a hybrid of both in-person and virtual learning if the region is in Phase 4, and online-online instruction in Phases 1-3.
Ferndale Public Schools
Ferndale Public Schools have announced a hybrid return plan that includes virtual and in-person options. View here.
Flint Community Schools
Flint Community Schools have a plan that includes face-to-face instruction, hybrid learning and virtual instruction. The district intends to return for virtual instruction on Wednesday, Aug. 5, with in-person instruction beginning on Monday, Sept. 14.
Fitzgerald Public Schools (Warren)
Fitzgerald Public Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Forest Hills Public Schools
Forest Hills Public Schools has issued the “Forest Hills Public Schools Return to Learn plan” as of Aug. 11. It provides the option for in-person or virtual learning.
Fraser Public Schools
Fraser Public Schools will offer a virtual learning option for K-12 students in addition to traditional in-person classes in the fall.
Officials say middle and high school students will be able to participate in hybrid courses. Elementary students that select the virtual learning option may need to visit the school in-person on occasion for support.
Students who select the virtual learning option will still be able to participate in school activities and athletics.
Garden City Public Schools
Garden City Public Schools is offering the option of in-person or virtual learning. View here.
Grand Blanc Community Schools
Grand Blanc Community Schools have not announced an official plan for the fall, but say a 100 percent virtual learning option will be available for students.
The district says it is preparing for in-person/online hybrid courses for the fall in addition to an online learning option. Families uncomfortable with in-person instruction amid the pandemic can choose the online-only option in the fall.
Grand Haven Area Public Schools
Grand Haven Area Public Schools is offering in-person, online and potential hybrid instruction formats for the fall. View the plan here.
Grand Ledge Public Schools
Grand Ledge Public Schools is scheduled to return to session on September 8. They offer an “offsite distance learning plan” through the end of the first trimester on Dec. 4. The district will not offer in-person learning before then.
Grand Rapids Public Schools
Grand Rapids Public Schools will be offering virtual learning only to start the school year.
Grandville Public Schools
Grandville Public Schools are planning for in-person school to begin Aug. 24.
Grosse Pointe Public School System
Grosse Pointe Public Schools announced July 31 that the district will begin the school year completely online due to the pandemic.
Classes are scheduled to begin on Sept. 8.
Officials say when it is safe to do so, the district will transition to a hybrid learning option consisting of both in-person and virtual learning, or a completely in-person learning model. A version of in-person learning will be available to certain students in need soon after the school year begins, officials said.
Online classes will consist of both synchronous and asynchronous instruction.
Hamtramck Public Schools
Hamtramck Public Schools will be providing a remote learning platform for the fall of 2020.
“We understand that we have students with IEPs, newcomer students, students that require various types of supports and with that understanding we will have our school buildings open to provide that support and services for our students,” reads a statement from the district.
Hartland Consolidated Schools
Hartland Consolidated Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Hazel Park Schools
Hazel Park Schools will be offering both in-person and virtual learning options. Read more about it here.
Hudsonville Public School District
The Hudsonville Public School District has not yet announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Officials say the planning process is underway for various instruction models for the fall.
Huron Valley Schools
Huron Valley Schools are offering a full-time online learning program for K-12 students in the fall.
The district is launching a “Huron Valley Virtual Academy” for junior kindergarten through grade 12 students to take classes entirely online amid the pandemic. Officials say daily learning will consist of engaging with educators in both live and recorded formats.
It is unclear if and how traditional in-person learning will be available in the district in the fall.
Jackson Public Schools
Jackson Public Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Jenison Public Schools
Jenison Public Schools is offering a mix of traditional (in-person) and virtual learning options. View here.
Kalamazoo Public Schools
Kentwood Public Schools
Kentwood Public Schools officials say that a hybrid option -- consisting of both in-person and virtual learning -- is the least desirable option for the fall. Officials say the hope is to return to in-person learning with new precautions and protocols in place that follow government and health guidelines. The district is also developing a virtual learning option, especially for families who are concerned about students returning to in-person learning amid the pandemic.
An official plan has not yet been released.
Lake Orion Community Schools
Lake Orion Community Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Officials say a plan is underway to meet new state guidelines for reopening in the fall.
Lake Shore Public Schools
Lake Shore Public Schools are still developing a plan for the fall, but have announced that a virtual learning option will be available for students.
The district says both traditional in-person learning and a 100 percent online learning option will be available.
Families are encouraged to take a survey identifying if they prefer in-person or online instruction amid the pandemic.
Lakeview Public Schools
Lakeview Public Schools are offering a hybrid of in-person and remote learning options. View the return plan here.
Lamphere Public Schools
Lamphere Public Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year. The plan will be updated here.
L’Anse Cruese Public Schools
L’Anse Creue Public Schools are offering the option to attend school and have in-person instruction if public health conditions permit. Students will receive traditional in-person instruction, with appropriate scheduling modifications to address health requirements, the district said.
Lansing Public School District
The Lansing Public School District said school will begin “100% remote” this fall -- Aug. 31. Read more here.
Lapeer Community Schools
Lincoln Park Public Schools
Livonia Public Schools
The Livonia Public Schools Board of Education voted on a plan during its Aug. 10 meeting that offers both in-person instruction following a “Safe Start September of remote learning,” and a longterm fully online option through Livonia Virtual.
Students will be gradually returned to the classroom on a time frame that will be determined while monitoring COVID-19 case data during that time.
Marysville Public Schools
Marysville Public Schools is preparing to welcome students back and hold traditional full-time in-person classes this fall, depending on the region’s phase of the coronavirus pandemic upon reopening.
The district will also offer Vikings Online -- a virtual learning option available to students reluctant or unable to return to in-person learning in the fall.
Officials expect plans to be finalized and disclosed to the public during a meeting with their board of education on August 13.
Melvindale-Northern Allen Park Public Schools
Melvindale-Northern Allen Park Public Schools will begin the upcoming school year entirely online, officials announced on July 20.
The district plans to offer a full-time virtual learning option, and possibly later return to in-person learning once the coronavirus pandemic is under control in the region. Officials say students will be supplied technology and guidance for online classes.
Teachers are currently developing plans for the virtual learning option. Officials say parents and guardians of students will be provided more information in the coming weeks.
Midland Public Schools
Midland Public Schools will offer options for virtual and in-person school this fall. View here.
Monroe Public Schools
Monroe Public Schools will offer options for virtual and in-person school this fall.
Northville Public Schools
Northville Public Schools will begin the school year entirely online, with plans to transition to in-person learning by the first week of October.
Classes are scheduled to start on Sept. 8 and are expected to transition from virtual to in-person instruction by Oct. 2, officials said.
All elementary, middle and high school classes will follow the Virtual Start model.
Elementary students will eventually transition back into full-time in-person learning Monday through Friday. Students will be broken up into cohorts that may consist of rotating teachers.
Middle and high school students will eventually transition into a hybrid model, in which students will rotate between in-person learning and virtual instruction every other day.
An fully-online learning option will also be available to students in the fall. Families are asked to identify which learning option their students prefer by Aug. 12.
Novi Community School District
The Novi Community School District has not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Oak Park Public Schools
Oak Park Public Schools will start the academic year with virtual learning only. Read more here.
Oakland Schools are developing a plan for the upcoming school year, and said that school will reopen in the fall.
The school district plans on hiring plenty of nurses to keep an eye on the health of students as they return to in-person learning in the fall.
Okemos Public Schools
Okemos Public Schools are developing a plan for the upcoming school year.
Officials say the plans will meet the state requirements and will be reviewed by July 30. The district expects to announce an official plan between Aug. 4-23.
Oxford Community Schools
Oxford Community Schools is offering the option for in-person or virtual learning. View the plan here.
Plymouth-Canton Community Schools
Plymouth-Canton Community Schools have approved a plan to offer remote/virtual modes of instruction.
You can find the latest information on Plymouth-Canton Community Schools’ “Re-Entry Task Force” on their website here.
Portage Public Schools
Portage Public Schools are currently developing a plan for the upcoming school year, but have announced a full-time online learning platform that will be available to students in the fall.
Officials say students can select to learn online through the “Virtual Learning Academy.” Families who select this option are committing to online learning for the entire semester. Students learning online can still participate in school activities and sports.
The district is also developing various instruction scenarios dependent upon the region’s phase in the MI Safe Start Plan in the fall.
Port Huron Area School District
The Port Huron Area School District is developing a plan for the upcoming school year, and says a virtual option will be available to students in the fall.
The virtual program offered will look different for elementary students compared to middle and high school students. Click here to learn more.
The district is also planning to offer full-time in-person instruction in the fall.
Officials expect to present a finalized plan to the Board of Education for approval by July 27.
Redford Union Schools
The Redford Union Schools district is offering a hybrid model for return to school. You can view that plan here.
River Rouge Public Schools
River Rouge Public Schools have not announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
Rochester Community Schools
The Rochester Community School District announced Aug. 5 that all students will begin the 2020-21 school year online due to the pandemic.
All classes will begin on Sept. 1. The district hopes to transition back to in-person learning by Oct. 1 -- if it is safe to do so, officials said.
The district is already offering an online-only learning option for students in the fall. Students enrolled in the RCS Virtual Campus program are also scheduled to begin on Sept. 1 and will continue their online learning as planned.
Students and families interested in the online-online learning option can choose to commit to the learning model by the semester (for grades 6-12), trimester (for grades K-5) or for the entire year.
Rockford Public Schools
Rockford Public Schools intends to offer full-time in-person learning beginning Aug. 24.
A full-time virtual learning option will also be available to students who are unwilling or unable to resume in-person learning in the fall. Online classes will also begin on Aug. 24.
Officials expect to finalize the district’s plan by the end of July.
Romeo Community Schools
Romeo Community Schools intends to offer in-person, virtual and hybrid learning options for students in the fall. Read more here.
Romulus Community Schools
Romulus Community Schools have not yet announced the details of its official plan for the upcoming school year.
Robert McCann, the Executive Director Tri-County Alliance for Public Education, said the school board voted to start the school year online only.
The district says there will be both in-person and virtual learning options available to students in the fall.
Roseville Community Schools
On Monday, August 10, the Roseville Community Schools Board of Education voted to give parents a choice of face-to-face instruction or a virtual on-line option in the fall.
Royal Oak Schools
Royal Oak Schools is planning to start the semester with all students virtually learning. Read more here.
Saginaw Public School District
Saginaw Public Schools is offering a hybrid model. View the plan here.
Saginaw Township Community Schools
Saginaw Township Community Schools have not yet announced an official plan for the upcoming school year.
The district says it hopes to offer three different learning options: in-person, online and a hybrid of the two. Students unwilling or unable to return to in-person learning in the fall can choose to participate in the virtual learning program.
Saline Area Schools
Saline Area Schools is offering a hybrid model. However, the district says plans are “fluid” at this time and will be updated based on government and health guidelines.
South Redford School District
The South Redford School District has not announced an official return-to-school plan.
Southfield Public Schools
Dr. Jennifer Green, the head of Southfield Public Schools, said her community has been hit very hard by COVID-19, but she’s worried nearly half of her students don’t have the technology to learn from home.
UPDATE -- July 28, 2020: Southfield Public School District to start school year with remote learning only
She spoke in a detailed interview about her district’s plans for return with Local 4 -- watch here.
South Lyon Community Schools
South Lyon Community Schools have not announced an official plan for the fall, but have shared some details so far.
The district is preparing to welcome students back and hold traditional full-time in-person classes in the fall. A virtual learning option will also be available to students unwilling or unable to return to in-person learning.
Officials expect to share more details during a meeting with the Board of Education on July 20.
Southgate Community School District
The Southgate Community School District has not shared plans for the upcoming school year.
Taylor School District
The Taylor School District has not shared plans for the upcoming school year.
Officials are asking families to complete a survey to identify their needs and expectations for the fall.
Traverse City Area Public Schools
Traverse City Area Public Schools are offering a full-time online learning program for K-12 students in the fall.
The district’s new “UpNorth Virtual” program will enroll a student in a local school where they can participate in school activities and resources while taking classes entirely online. Students will also have access to “local learning labs” to study at or participate in virtually for support from a local teacher or mentor, officials said.
Enrollment is currently open for the UpNorth Virtual program. It is unclear if and how traditional in-person learning will be available in the district in the fall.
Trenton Public Schools
Trenton Public Schools is offering a hybrid model of face-to-face and remote instruction. View the plan here.
Troy School District
The Troy School District has not announced a final plan for the upcoming school year.
Utica Community Schools
Utica Community Schools is offering a hybrid model of in-person and virtual learning.
Parents who are interested in virtual learning only for their child are encouraged to contact the district. Officials say laptops will be provided to all students in the fall.
Walled Lake Consolidated Schools
The Walled Lake Consolidated Schools district will begin the 2020-21 with remote learning only.
The district said the Walled Lake Schools Board of Education voted on Tuesday, Aug. 4 at its special meeting to adopt the “WLCSD Return to Learn Plan.” The district will begin the 2020-21 school year online and conduct school with remote learning only until at least Friday, Oct. 30.
Warren Consolidated Schools
Warren Consolidated Schools have been planning to return to in-person instruction in the fall. We’re waiting for an official plan.
Families interested in virtual learning only for the fall are asked to contact the district.
The Warren Education Association, which represents nearly 1,000 educators in the district, sent out a letter urging the district to suspend any plans of in-person learning to prioritize student and staff health. You can read the letter here.
Warren Woods Public Schools
Warren Woods Public Schools district intends to offer in-person, online and hybrid learning options for students in the fall. Families who plan to participate in the virtual learning option should contact the school to begin registration.
Waterford School District
The Waterford School District is planning on a district-wide remote start on Aug. 31. View more information here.
Wayne-Westland Community School District
Wayne-Westland Community Schools officials voted to begin the 2020-21 school year with distance learning for all Wayne-Westland students until at least October 23, 2020.
Students will learn virtually with Wayne-Westland Community Schools teachers.
West Bloomfield School District
The West Bloomfield School District has announced its official plans for the upcoming school year.
West Bloomfield High School students will all participate in a virtual learning program while the region is in Phase 4 of the MI Safe Start Plan. Officials say this is necessary due to the school’s large population size, as mitigating the spread of COVID-19 would be nearly impossible.
Elementary and middle school students will participate in a hybrid learning program, alternating between mornings and afternoons of in-person instruction and remote instruction. Students will be broken up into small cohorts of less than 20 students each. Some cohorts will engage in in-person learning in the mornings and the others will take the afternoons.
Officials say that if the region advances into Phase 5 of the MI Safe Start Plan, all schools will return to traditional in-person learning five days a week.
West Ottawa Public School District
The West Ottawa Public School District will offer a hybrid model of options for in-person and virtual learning this fall. View the plan here.
Woodhaven-Brownstown School District
The Woodhaven-Brownstown School District is still developing a plan for the upcoming school year.
The district expects to welcome students back to the classrooms in the fall.
Wyandotte Public Schools
Wyandotte Public Schools is offering virtual learning for students. Go here to learn more.
Zeeland Public Schools
Zeeland Public Schools are still developing a plan for the upcoming school year.
Officials say the district is in “Phase Two” of a “Phase Five″ plan to prepare for the fall.
Note: Again, we understand this list is not comprehensive (there are hundreds of school districts in Michigan!), but we want to include as many districts as possible. If your or your child’s school district has announced a reopening plan and it is not shared above, please email the author with the information.
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