On March 17, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly issued an executive order directing that all kindergarten through 12th grade school buildings be closed.


And this left school officials having to come up with plans for finishing the school year even though students were no longer in school buildings.


School districts developed continuous learning plans that utilized the internet and other means of remote instruction.


And now there are questions about what will happen at the start of 2020-2021 school year.


"We’re excited and anxious to get (students) back safely as soon as we can," Jake Potter, director of public relations for the Leavenworth public schools. "But that’s also going to mean some adjustments."


He recently spoke about the start of the next school year during a virtual town hall meeting hosted by Leavenworth Mayor Mike Griswold.


Potter said the school year for the Leavenworth district is scheduled to start Aug. 17.


He said one of the things school officials will do when students return is determine gaps pupils may have in their education and areas that may require intervention or strengthening.


He said Leavenworth school officials may be looking at a flexible start for the next school year. He said this may mean having students come to school earlier than Aug. 17 if possible.


"That requires lots of conversations, lots of collaboration with our stakeholders," Potter said.


He said school officials should receive guidance from the Kansas State Department of Education about the next school year in mid July.


"So we’ll be planning basically multiple scenarios," he said.


Potter said social distancing guidelines may alter the way things look for the next school year.


He said the way school lunches are served may be altered. School assemblies and back to school nights also may look different.


Basehor-Linwood Superintendent David Howard said he has been receiving a lot of questions about the next school year.


He addressed the issue in a video recently posted on a school district’s Facebook page.


"I believe many of you will agree that schools are tremendously more effective at educating our students when those students are actually in the buildings," he said.


Howard said officials in the Basehor-Linwood district are planning to reopen schools Aug. 18.


"We more than likely will have several protocols in place for students and staff but much of that will be determined on how we are doing as a country and state," he said.


He said school officials will follow guidelines set by the state government and Leavenworth County Health Department.


"We are also preparing a plan B in case the beginning of the school year is affected," Howard said.


In the video, Howard expressed gratitude to parents for "taking on the role of helping to educate their children" after schools were closed because of the pandemic. He also expressed pride in Basehor-Linwood teachers and paraeducators for shifting to online curriculum in such a short period of time.


Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR