Start of new Philly school year could be delayed as officials prepare for a return amid pandemic

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) The first day of school in Philadelphia this fall could be delayed as the school district prepares for a return to classes in a pandemic.

Superintendent William Hite has said the Aug. 31 first day for students could be delayed by as much as a week. 

He said it's likely that teachers, who haven't been in their classrooms since March, may have experienced personal losses and may need support.

"One of the considerations is looking at what training will need to be done to address the social and emotional aspects of all of these things that individuals have been dealing with,” Hite said. 

He also indicated there will be anti-racism education. 

Any physical return to school buildings will also require more training in cleaning and social distancing protocols.

"It's going to be based on how long we think it will take in order to do those things before we make a decision to push the start of the year back,” he added. 

Hite said the district expects to release its back-to-school plan on July 15.