Several Pee Dee districts to begin LEAP days Monday

Pee Dee

DILLON, SC (WBTW) — Several school districts across the Pee Dee are set to begin LEAP days Monday, including Dillon School District Four.

“It was basically just pick up and go,” South Elementary School Principal Jan Powers-Penuel said, describing teachers’ first week back. “To get them prepared for not only our LEAP days but the upcoming school year.”

LEAP stands for Learn, Evaluate, Analyze and Prepare. The SC General Assembly approved funding for five additional instructional days at the start of the school year for students in 4K through eighth grade. The state suggests some projects for the days, including revisiting prior content, diagnostic activities, among others.

Dillon Four wants to make sure its students are ready to learn during an unprecedented school year.

“We wanted to take the time to of course establish that relationship, begin that relationship between teachers and students,” Powers-Penuel said. “It’s an opportunity for us to teach virtual expectations and procedures as well as our school-wide face-to-face expectations and procedures.”

Powers-Penuel said teachers have been training for virtual all summer, and that this week ‘they actually had time to prepare by doing.’

Schedules for the LEAP days will be staggered, and both face-to-face and virtual students will be coming in for at least one day.

Powers-Penuel said that there will be no more than five students in a classroom, which would create an average of around 45 to 50 students on campus at South Elementary.

The school has implemented many precautions ahead of children returning to the classroom. Students and staff will need masks. Social distance markers have been placed in hallways. An isolation room has been set up. No one minus registered students and teachers can enter the building. Students will stay in their classrooms throughout the day. Deep cleaning will happen daily. The list goes on.

“Our first goal was to make sure that staff and students would be safe,” Powers-Penuel said.

Other districts beginning their LEAP days Monday include Florence County School District Two, Three and Five along with Dillon School District Three.

Marion County’s LEAP days are ongoing now, while Marlboro County’s wrapped up Friday. Horry County Schools has also wrapped up its LEAP days.

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