Marshall County Schools will have four days of all virtual instruction leading up to a four-day “fall break” weekend next month.

Student, faculty and staff will have Oct. 9 and Oct. 12 off for an extended weekend and break during the 2020 school year. But students will also have time away from the school facilities from Oct. 5-8 while engaging in online learning.

Marshall County Schools Superintendent Trent Lovett said the decision to offer the virtual week was to ease some of the stresses of the pandemic school year teachers and students are experiencing.

“As I go through the schools, I see the looks on their faces,” and feel the stress, he said. Lovett said it’s nothing like he’s experienced in 32 years of education.

He added that Marshall County has been one of the only schools in the region to have gone with full 5-day-a-week, in-person sessions as opposed to going only four days or breaking up the school week with some in-person and some online instruction.

Recently, Mayfield Independent Schools opted to begin 4-day-a-week in-person instruction after their fall break with Fridays being online only. That decision was to allow teachers time to prepare instructional planning after offering simultaneous in-person and online classes.

“And we made it further than I thought,” Lovett added. “I’m so proud of our students, our teachers and our staff.”

Schools will also be closed on Nov. 3 for Election Day, then Nov. 25-27 for the Thanksgiving holiday and Dec. 21-Jan. 5 for Christmas break.