Boreal Sun Charter School

First grade teacher Stephanie Graf's classroom during the Boreal Sun Charter School open house Tuesday evening, August 15, 2017.

As regular public schools open their doors to any students next week, few charter school students will be heading to school buildings.

Under state law, charter schools operate independently of school districts, and the five charter schools in the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District have their own reopening plans. Most plans involve serving limited numbers of students part-time at school buildings.

Schools in the Fairbanks area have been closed to all students except high school athletes and high-needs students since March because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Yumi McCulloch, director of public relations at the school district, provided a few details of each charter schools’ plans to expand services at school buildings.

Charter schools were contacted directly by phone or email and did not respond to questions. Charter schools are governed by academic policy committees involving teachers and parents.

At Chinook Montessori Charter School, a K-8 school, a meeting is planned for Tuesday to discuss phasing in about 10% of students, according to McCulloch. Chinook currently has three students phased in.

“The school day would be approximately 8-12 noon for K-3, and older students would stay until 1 p.m.,” McCulloch wrote.

At Watershed Charter School, another K-8 school, 30 students will be phased in starting Tuesday. No other details were provided.

At Discovery Peak Charter School, also a K-8 school, students have been divided into two cohorts who will attend two days a week with three days of remote learning.

Classes will have six to nine students, and families have the option to choose full remote learning, according to McCulloch.

At Boreal Sun Charter School, which is K-8, 17 students are being phased in for in-person learning Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to noon, according to McCulloch. Students had the option to attend school two or four days a week, and most chose four, McCulloch wrote.

“They have a 30-minute outdoor recess and snack. Snack is brought from home and must be eaten outside,” McCulloch’s email said.

At Effie Kokrine Charter School, which is a high school, McCulloch said 40 students are being phased in to attend every other day in cohorts.

Contact staff writer Amanda Bohman at 459-7545. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMborough.

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