TIFTON — Tift County Schools will start the 2020-21 school year Friday, Aug. 7, under a Yellow designation, meaning students will attend on a rotating basis, according to a statement released Tuesday.

“The most recent information we have received from the Department of Public Health and local health officials has led us to this decision,” Superintendent Adam Hathaway said in the statement. “As we navigate the uncertain waters of the 2020-21 school year, we will lean heavily on both the DPH and our local health officials to provide us the most timely and accurate information to keep our staff and students safe and healthy. As we have stated multiple times, the safety and security of Tift County Schools’ students and staff is of the utmost importance.”

In an automated call to parents, Hathaway said the decision to go back to school under a Yellow designation was not easy, but that the health and wellbeing of the whole community was at the forefront of the decision-making process.

A Yellow designation means schools will be open and students will attend on a rotation. Students have been sorted into a Blue cohort and a White cohort, with each cohort switching off in-person learning days and virtual learning days. Parents can find their child’s designation by using the Infinite Campus Parent Portal.

Parents can visit tiftschools.com and click the “Back to School” button at the top of the page to see all the information that is currently available on the restarting of school.

“We have an amazing team of administrators, teachers and staff working daily to make sure we serve our students at the highest level possible,” Hathaway said. “We ask for the public to provide grace to all of our faculty and staff as we continue to return to normal operations. This is not a task we are taking lightly, and will work diligently to be as transparent as possible to our community stakeholders.”

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