LPS to install plexiglass in all school lunchrooms

Scott Middle School was the first school to see the change, and officials say it's been a success thus far.

To further reduce risk and the spread of COVID-19 in public schools, the district is now beginning to install plexiglass barriers between students at lunchroom tables.

Lincoln Public Schools has been working with the Lancaster County Health Department since the pandemic began to help schools run safely and efficiently, they say.

“The plexiglass just adds another level of risk prevention in that context where it provides a barrier, it’s not intended to be a complete risk removal, it reduces that risk there though substantially, especially for those kids across the table,” says Jesse Davey with the county health department.

Davey says the health department has also suggested shorter lunch periods for all schools to further reduce the risk of students spreading possible droplets to their peers while they have their masks off.

“If you’re not masked and you’re in close proximity, the most limited amount of time is what you’re looking for,” Davey says.

School officials say the plexiglass barriers have been in the plans for schools for weeks, but a matter of supply and demand is why the district is just now putting them up.

Scott Middle School near 27th and Pine Lake was the first school to see the change, as it is the largest middle school and has the highest capacity of students inside at any given time than other public school in Lincoln.

LPS says the other middle schools will be the first priority for the plexiglass.

“Based on product availability with the plexiglass, we’re looking to continue with high schools and elementary schools, so, it’s looking to be about three or four weeks assuming we get the product in that we’re able to complete all the schools in LPS,” says Liz Standish, the Associate Superintendent of Business Affairs with LPS.

Standish says the district has spent nearly $150,000 on the plexiglass product – that money coming from the CARES Act funding.

Standish also says that there isn’t much other money being spent on the plexiglass, as employees already in the LPS system are measuring, cutting, and setting up the barriers in each school.

Although not entirely receptive to the idea at first, Standish says students have familiarized themselves with the new normal of their school days and says they have been doing a great job.

Categories: Education News, Lancaster, Nebraska News