Return to In-person Instruction

Health & Safety

  • To ensure a safe return to in-person instruction and division operations, these key health mitigation strategies will continue to be followed:

      • Masks will be a requirement for all students and staff while at the bus stop, on the bus, and in school when not eating or drinking.
      • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE – i.e. face shields, gloves, wipes, sanitizer, etc.) will be available for teachers and staff.
      • Desks in classrooms will be set up at least 3 feet apart and movement in hallways will be structured to assist students with appropriately practicing social distancing. 
      • Hand washing and use of hand sanitizer will be taught to younger students and expected of older students. 
      • Buildings will be sanitized on a daily basis.

    Protocol for Reports of Positive Cases: Upon the report of a positive COVID-19 case or exposure in a building, existing protocols for contact tracing and sanitization will be immediately implemented. In the instance that a classroom, section(s) of a school and/or an entire school needs to be closed temporarily to control any type of an outbreak, parents will be notified and students will return to the virtual learning setting until the sanitization process is complete.  Additionally, plans are in place at each school to have an isolation room for students who are showing symptoms of COVID-19 to remain until they can be picked up from school. Parents are reminded to monitor their student’s health to watch for symptoms prior to arrival at school each day:

    Check for the Following COVID-19 Symptoms 

    My Child Has a Symptom - What Should I Do? 

    • Fever
    • Stay home
    • Cough
    • Notify your child’s school
    • Sneezing
    • If anyone in the household is sick, please keep all children at home
    • Shortness of breath
    • Seek medical attention, if needed
    • Rash
    • Temperature of 100.4°F and over


    Building Ventilation: Using CDC guidelines, Norfolk Public Schools (NPS) developed a plan to evaluate fresh air ventilation in each school’s classrooms. As part of this process, NPS consulted with the architects and engineers involved with designing the school division’s newest facilities along with members of the NPS Facilities team. These collaborative efforts focused on fresh air ventilation by determining whether the HVAC unit supplying conditioned air to the classrooms has a mechanical damper to provide 20% fresh air into the conditioned air cycles. Norfolk Public Schools has also implemented the CDC guidelines for layered strategies to reduce exposures to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. This includes using multiple mitigation strategies with several layers of safeguards to reduce the spread of disease and lower the risk of exposure. In addition to the aforementioned ventilation review, NPS’s layered approach includes practicing social distancing, wearing face masks, and encouraging proper hand hygiene. For more information and to view details on ventilation by school, visit:

Operational Needs and Support

  • With the approved plan there has been much consideration for operational needs and resources to comprehensively support the community with safely transitioning students and staff back to school for in-person instruction. These considerations include childcare needs, school nutrition, and transportation.


    School Nutrition Services: 
    For school year 2021-22, Norfolk Public Schools will offer breakfast and lunch on school days free of charge to all students under the Seamless Summer Option (SSO) of the National School Lunch Program. No meal program applications are needed from households.  Weekend meals are no longer available. 

    All schools hosting programs or activities after the instructional day is over are encouraged to participate in the At-Risk Child and Adult Care Foodservice Program (CACFP).  This federal program provides free supper and/or snack free of charge to students.  An educational or enrichment activity is required.  Schools interested in this option must complete a program site application and forward to School Nutrition for processing.  VDOE approval is required prior to new programs starting, so please initiate this process at least two weeks in advance of your start date.

    The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) is expected to continue in the same group of ten schools as last year.  More information is coming soon!

    Effective on the first day of school, students will pick up their breakfast from kiosks and/or the cafeteria.  Students will pick up their lunch from the cafeteria.  Meals will be consumed in classrooms, or a combination of spaces that includes the cafeteria.  COVID-19 mitigation strategies include frequent and on-going cleaning and sanitizing, use of PPE, and social distancing. 

    The cafeterias may resume a limited a la carte program, at some point during the year. Transactions at the point of sale for students and adults will continue to be cashless and occur without the use of keypads.  Middle and high schools may resume the vending program.  SmartSnack and other USDA regulations and restrictions including competitive food regulations will remain in place, as will the tenets of NPS Wellness Policy.  If you have questions or need more information about what can be sold and when, please contact Heather Steide, Operations Manager, by email or at (757) 628-3565. 

    Free meals for NPS students attending Virtual Scholars Academy will be available for pick up by the student or parent/guardian at the end of the instructional day, Monday- Friday at any of the five high schools and STEM Academy. Additional sites may be added. Household requests for an alternate pick-up can be made by emailing the Office of School Nutrition at  We will do our best to accommodate.

    Taste of Norfolk Public Schools is returning soon!  Do you have a favorite family recipe with cultural significance that you would be willing to share?  If so, please contact Alyssa Hughes, Nutrition Education Specialist, at

    School Nutrition is hiring!  Do you know who is available during the day to help us provide tasty, nutritious meals to students and help them develop lifelong, healthy food habits?  High school students are encouraged to apply and will be offered a flexible schedule.  Available positions and on-line applications can be accessed at  Search “School Nutrition”. 

    For updates and additional information, please visit our website at or follow us on social media at @SchoolMeals_NPS.

    Transportation: In order to ensure the ability to transport all students to and from school, ridership on school buses will be increased up to 40 students where necessary.  Children who live in the same household must share a seat. Additional mitigation strategies include:

    • Masks will be worn by drivers and students at all times. Drivers will provide masks to students that may need one
    • Drivers will sanitize all seats and high touch areas between all routes
    • Windows will be opened as weather permits 

      Norfolk Public Schools has launched a new “Here Comes the Bus” app that will allow families to monitor daily school bus transportation information, including where a specific bus is on its route. It can be downloaded to any smartphone, tablet, or personal computer from the App Store or Google Play, depending on the operating system of the device. The “Here Comes the Bus” app and website include details about bus number changes and alerts to families when their child’s bus is approaching the designated bus stop. To sign up for the app, parents/guardians will need to enter the Norfolk Public Schools Account Code: 29096 and their child’s student ID number. To find your child’s student ID number: 

      1. Login to ParentVue 

      2. Click on your child’s name.  This will access the modules list. 

      3. Click on Student Info.  Your child’s Student ID is in the field named Perm ID.   

      4. If you have multiple children in Norfolk Public Schools, click the Navigation button in the upper left corner of the screen.  Then click Student List in the upper left corner of the screen.  This will return you to the screen with the list of your children.  Return to Step 2 above. 

      For more information about the "Here Comes the Bus" app, visit:

    Staggered Time Adjustments: Changes to the staggered times are directly related to key health mitigation strategies for sanitizing after each bus route. Drivers will routinely sanitize seats and frequently touched areas (i.e. entry handrails, windows, etc.) after each drop off, which is estimated to take 10-15 minutes. The additional time between staggers will also allow drivers to make two runs within one stagger to transport all students to school in a safe and timely manner.  Ghent Elementary School’s times will temporarily change to 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. to accommodate the bus route with Academy for Discovery at Lakewood students. 


    Current Times

    Temporary Changes

    First Stagger

    7:25 a.m. – 2:05 p.m.

    7:25 a.m. – 2:05 p.m.

    Second Stagger

    8:15 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.

    8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

    Third Stagger

    8:55 a.m. – 3:20 p.m.

    9:15 a.m. – 3:40 p.m.

    Fourth Stagger

    9:30 a.m. – 3:55 p.m.

    9:55 a.m. – 4:20 p.m.