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Return to Learn
Return to Learn

Buncombe County Schools’ faculty and staff are looking forward to a brand new school year of in-person learning. We will be focused on addressing any educational challenges our students may have faced due to COVID-19 disruptions and also work to accelerate their learning this year. The pandemic has shown us that change is the only constant we’ve faced. We will continue to monitor the health situation in our schools and across our county and make any safety modifications necessary to ensure we can maintain a healthy, in-person learning environment.

Below are some helpful links to information regarding safety protocols and expectations in our buildings as well as specific COVID protocols from Buncombe County Health and Human Services. View all of our recent Return to Learn school updates.

Looking for the latest data?

We want to remind you that each Thursday by Noon, schools will post their new COVID-positive cases on their websites.

Please log on to your school’s website, click on the “Announcements” tab under "Quick Links" on the left side of the screen (screenshot example below), and you’ll see the updated post at the top of the page. The post will be titled "Weekly COVID-19 Update."

This number, which reflects the prior week (Wednesday to Wednesday), includes staff and student school-affected cases. 

Please remember if a student or staff member is identified as a close contact of a COVID positive, they will immediately receive a direct communication with important health guidance.

 Please reach out to MAHEC’s School Health Program Manager April Baur,, with any general health questions.

Welcome Back
BCS Superintendent Dr. Tony Baldwin shares a special back-to-school welcome with families, students, and staff. In his hopeful message, Dr. Baldwin addresses some of this year's goals and stresses the continued importance of collaboration and teamwork in navigating this turbulent season of COVID-19. View the full message transcript.

Return to Learn Parent Resources
A teacher at Oakley Elementary safely instructs a student.• StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit (NCDHHS)
Significant updates were made to this toolkit over the summer regarding contact tracing and quarantine guidance.
StrongSchoolsNC Toolkit Glossary of Terms (PDF)

• COVID-19 Symptom Attestation (PDF)
BCS Staff, students, and visitors agree not to enter BCS facilities when exhibiting any of these COVID-19 symptoms.

There are three situations that your child may be asked to isolate or quarantine: 1) symptoms of COVID-19, 2) positive for COVID-19, or 3) exposure to someone with COVID-19. These documents and flowcharts will help you understand when a student may return to school:

• Exclusion Letter (PDF) - Also available in SpanishRussian, Romanian, Chinese, and Vietnamese.
 Criteria for Return to School (PDF)
• Student COVID Protocol Flowchart: Close Contact (PDF)
• Student COVID Protocol Flowchart: Symptomatic (PDF)
Metrics to Reconsider Mask Requirements (PDF)

Free Breakfast and Lunch

If your child is in isolation and quarantine, a family member who is well is welcome to pick up a breakfast and lunch for that child from any school. They just need to place that order with the school's cafeteria manager. That contact list is posted HERE.

In-School Rapid Testing
BCS, in partnership with our school nurse program, is expanding our Rapid Antigen testing. We are working to have rapid antigen tests available in our schools for staff and students with symptoms of COVID-19*. For more details, reach out to your school nurse or administrator.

*New this year, a negative rapid antigen test will allow a symptomatic student to return to school activities (if they are feeling well and have not been named a close contact).

Hybrid Learning During Isolation or Quarantine
A teacher discusses geometry during remote learning.When a student is in isolation or quarantined due to COVID-19, that student will engage in hybrid learning during this time period. Instruction will take place synchronously and/or asynchronously. Hybrid learning will be customized by the teacher(s) depending on the student’s age and curriculum content. Students will use their Learning Management System (LMS) to access assignments and will communicate directly with their teacher for more specific instructions.

Please visit our Innovative Learning Environments page for more details.

Technology Assistance
We're committed to preparing students for their tomorrow.We're looking forward a successful school year! Need assistance? We're here to help! Here are our current support options.

En español?
• Vea nuestros videos en español sobre instrucciones para el aprendizaje digital.
• Técnico- Habla Espanol: 828-255-5987, Lunes - Viernes, 7:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Technology Help Desk
• Call 828-255-5987, 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday.
• A Spanish-speaking technician is available each day from 7:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Live Chat is available 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday.
If busy, email

'Return to Learn' and District Updates
All of our important back-to-school announcements, as well as our latest stories and safety information, can be found in our Top Stories news feed. (View the Top Stories menu to access all headlines to date.)
Drone Obstacle Course Trains Future Pilots at Reynolds High

Drone Technology students turned the A.C. Reynolds High School football field into a 100-yard obstacle course. …

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BCS Celebrates Hispanic American Heritage Month

National Hispanic American Heritage Month is Sept. 15-Oct. 15, and classes across the Buncombe County Schools district have h …

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Music Technology Brings Art and Culture Together

Music technology lessons at A.C. Reynolds Middle gave eighth graders a chance to experience a new side of the music. …

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2021 School Counselors, Social Worker of the Year

Congratulations to the 2020-21 BCS School Counselors and Social Worker of the Year, who tirelessly support and advocate for t …

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BCS Foundation Awards Grants to Teachers

The Buncombe County Schools Foundation has awarded 15 grants to help teachers maximize learning in their classrooms. These 15 …

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Seven to Sing with 2021 North Carolina Honors Chorus

The NCMEA invites seven BCS high school students to the join this year's state High School Honors Chorus. …

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Stop the Bleed Kits Improve School Safety

Thanks to a years-long collaborative effort, Buncombe County Schools staff members are much better prepared to deal with heal …

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Finding the Art in Engineering through Cityscapes

Introduction to Engineering looked a lot like an art class at the Nesbitt Discovery Academy. …

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Glen Arden Celebrates Hispanic Heritage

Teachers plan a cultural celebration in the car rider line for Hispanic Heritage Month. …

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Dual Language Classes Learn Together

Tuesday saw a conference of kindergarteners in Dual Language Spanish Immersion classes across the BCS district. As part of Na …

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