An Update from Superintendent Kelly Sprinkles

Video snapshot of Superintendent Kelly Sprinkles

On Monday, September 28, we are eagerly looking forward to our students returning to in-person, Learning@School, for the first time since we dismissed in March.  We appreciate each of our students, families, and staff for their cooperation and understanding as we rapidly adjusted to a new way of teaching and learning.

When our students begin Learning@School, we will be operating on a four day school week. Each student will attend in-person classes on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.  All students in the Knox County Public Schools will be Learning@Home on Wednesday at this time.

For those students that will be joining us at school on Monday, we want to share the following information with you:

  • Students riding the bus will be assigned a seat, will be seated with siblings, and will be required to wear a mask. Once they step onto the bus, they will have their temperature taken by a bus monitor.  Any student with a fever will be safely directed or escorted back home. After the health check, students will fill the bus from the back to the front to limit direct contact among students.
  • Families of middle and high school students may not drop off their child at an elementary school to ride a bus to the middle or high school.
  • If you are dropping off your child, please have him or her remain in the vehicle with a mask on until you reach our health checkpoint.  A staff member will take their temperature before they get out of the vehicle.

Each of our schools have scheduling and precautionary procedures that are specific to them.  That information will soon be added to our website and is included in this week’s EDUCATION newsletter inside The Mountain Advocate newspaper.

Our return to school remains a fluid situation. If positive cases increase in Knox County, we may need to go to an alternating A/B schedule, a school-specific schedule, or everyone Learning@Home. We will be following the Kentucky Department of Public Health and Department of Education’s color-coded framework to make these decisions. Currently, Knox County is considered orange, which means we are operating hybrid (at home and at school) and taking additional mitigation steps to prevent COVID-19 in our schools.

If our county reaches the red (critical) level of disease activity, we will be in direct contact with the Knox County Health Department to analyze the data and potentially return all students to Learning@Home until the weekly incidence rate decreases.  If the opposite occurs, and Knox County’s trend data shows the minimal transmission of COVID-19, we will work to expand Learning@School to all five days a week.

Families that choose to continue Learning@Home for their children will still access lessons using Google Classroom and other online applications.  Households that do not have Internet access are asked to contact our Technology Helpdesk at 606-277-2415 to discuss additional options that might be available.

We recognize that timely information is critical, therefore we ask that you bookmark our website ( and the district’s official social media accounts (each end with /knoxkyschools in the address or @knoxkyschools).  You will also want to ensure that your child’s school has your current telephone number on file for our telephone messages.

The health and safety of students and staff has always been the top priority of our district, and that commitment will not change.  Our custodial staff are using sanitizing and disinfectants throughout the day, our bus drivers are disinfecting seats after routes, and every school has the hand sanitizer and masks needed to create a safe and clean learning environment.

We need the help our community in order to continue offering in-person classes with the ultimate goal of five days a week.  Please remember to wear a mask, social distance inside and outside, use hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available, and be tested for COVID-19 if you develop any of the symptoms or if you have been close to someone who has tested positive.

As always, thank you for the opportunity to educate your child. Together, we will make this a successful school year for all of our students.

Wishing you good health,

Kelly Sprinkles