Fulton County Schools push back reopening date, offers virtual classes

Some students in Fulton County are pushing for more safety precautions when they return to school in the fall.

Some have taken to social media demand change after the district announced their reopening plans for next month.

There are at least two student petitions online demanding additional safeguards on campuses. The main thing for one Milton High School student is making masks a requirement for everyone.

On Monday, school leaders announced only staff will be required to wear a mask on campus.

Students catching the bus will also need a face-covering during their ride.

Rising Junior Michael Rainwater created this petition in response.

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"The people who want to go into school are now putting their lives at risk because they are wearing a mask but someone else isn't," he explained.

To help keep everyone safe, the district's plan is to assign seats on buses, install hand sanitizing stations and barriers and disinfect facilities often.

"You can do all these measures but at the end of the day if someone sneezes and you walk behind it, you're still putting yourself and others at risk," Rainwater explained.

The most recent numbers from the Georgia Department of Public Health shows more than 7,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Fulton County.

That's the second-highest number in the state.

It also ranks the highest in COVID-19 related fatalities with a total of 314 deaths.

During Monday's board Meeting Superintendent Mike Looney said "everything we are communicating today is our intent as of today but is completely depending on what the data says."

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Looney told the board he is following CDC guidelines.

The district will teach students the importance of wearing a face covering.

"I believe that we are better off influencing through the power of relationships than requiring," Looney explained.

FCS is offering both virtual and in-person classes for students.

Classes will resume on August 17. It was expected to start on August 10

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Rainwater says he will likely continue with online classes.

His petition includes 15 safety recommendations.

If you are planning to enroll your kids in virtual classes, you have until July 17 to sign up.

RELATED: CoronavirusNOW.com, FOX launches national hub for COVID-19 news and updates.

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