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Cleveland Schools CEO Eric Gordon announces district will be online-only for first 9 weeks

Cleveland Schools confirmed on Friday that it will be virtual only through the first quarter of the academic calendar.

CLEVELAND — With the school year approaching, Cleveland Metropolitan CEO Eric Gordon has announced plans for how the district will approach the upcoming calendar.

Most notably, the district will be participating in virtual-only classes through the first nine weeks of the school year, Gordon confirmed to 3News' Tiffany Tarpley. Gordon also said that the district is currently working to ensure that every family has the necessary tools, including devices and internet connection, to give access to the online classroom.

"This will be more formalized instruction, teachers and students interacting in more formal class-like setting with homework and other projects," he explains.

After the first nine weeks -- which will comprise the first quarter of the academic calendar -- Gordon said that the goal is to get students back in the classroom. It's too early to tell, however, whether or not that will feasible and Gordon said the district will adjust its plans accordingly as the second quarter approaches.

The district released its full 34-page plan on Friday, which included guidelines for when students would eventually get back in the classroom such as face mask and social distancing rules. Educators say the format of the school year will depend on how Cuyahoga County fairs in Ohio's COVID-19 alert system, as it is currently at Level 3 (red).

According to Gordon, Cleveland Schools' virtual-only start to the school year comes as the result of concerns from teachers and parents alike regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. When students do return to the classroom, Gordon said the district will be enforcing strict social distancing protocols and sanitation policies in classrooms and common areas.

"A lot of effort has been put in place to make sure this can be a good experience for the kids and their families," he says.

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