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Richmond parents urged to do these things before school starts

Posted at 7:10 AM, Sep 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-01 07:10:27-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- One week before a virtual start to the school year, Richmond school leaders are encouraging families to prepare.

Chief Academic Officer, Tracy Epp, said there would be back-to-school distributions throughout the coming weeks.

Epp said those back-to-school distributions would take place at the students’ schools in a socially-distanced environment. She said families would be able to get their schedule, pick up PPE, learning kits, and textbooks, among other things.

For elementary students, distributions were set to take place on September 3 - 5.

For middle and high school students, distributions were scheduled for September 10 - 12.

Epp also recommended that families check their mail. She said the district planned to mail schedules home so students would know who their teachers.

She reminded parents to update their address and contact information with their schools so that they don’t miss anything.

“If you are an RPS family and you have not subscribed to our RPS Direct, go to our website and sign up. That’s our daily Superintendent’s newsletter, and that’s how you get the fastest information,” she said. “Also on the website,, if you go to our ‘Reopening with Love’ section, there’s a whole section with pages on details. That has everything you need to know about our plan for the school year.”

Epp said there are some other things families can do to prepare their homes for virtual learning.

She recommended finding a designated learning space for your child ahead of time — even if it’s just a dining room table.

Parents can also talk to their children about their routines and find ways to help them focus.

“I think it really is, how can you get your child excited about their learning space? Whatever that is. Whether that's a little corner with a pillow, or a desk, or a table, or a mobile stick, you know… a little stand that can move depending on what's happening in the home on a given day,” Epp said.

Other ideas include getting a bin for your child so that when they’re done with the school day, they can put their work to the side.

Talk to your child about things they can do after the day is over, or ways that they can get outside during breaks or lunches.

“Having a family meeting with the kiddos and saying, ‘All right, like, let's make this fun,’ and you don't have to spend a lot of money to do that either,” Epp said.

Families who run into any tech issues, or have questions can call the RPS Support line at 804-780-6195.