Apison School Updates

Free Student Meals

Beginning Tuesday, Sept. 8, all students will be able to eat free. Here are a few details:

  • Students that normally pay reduced or full-pay prices will no longer be charged for breakfast or lunch.
  • Each student is permitted one breakfast and one lunch per day. A la carte items are not included.
  • Pickup meals will continue to be provided each week, and all of these meals will be provided free to students.
  • These meals are paid for by a USDA program.
  • At Home (Full Digital) students will continue to pick their meals up on Wednesdays.

Schedule Announcement: Phase 3 Starting Aug. 31
Phase 3

In our reopening plan, the School Reopening Task Force established gating criteria based on data from the Hamilton County Health Department to determine the operational phase of schools. To ensure we were prepared to open safely, the district announced the Safe Start, Great Start extended orientation on Aug. 3. This schedule placed students into two cohorts to allow staff and families time to acclimate to the new changes this school year. This opening schedule runs until Friday, Aug. 28.

Our current five-day average trend is 1515 active cases, which puts us in the transition band of Phase 3. There are several other factors the district considers when the numbers fall in the transition area including the average number of hospitalizations, average number of ICU patients, and the number of student/teacher absences. Currently, daily cases and hospitalizations are trending down, while average number of ICU patients is holding steady. Since July 2, when the Task Force presented the initial reentry and continuous learning plan to the school board, active cases have never reached the Phase 2 threshold of 1840 active cases. The day that had the highest number of active cases was July 27 at 1838 for that single day and the highest five-day average was 1628 from July 21-July 27. 

Beginning Monday, Aug. 31, Hamilton County Schools will follow the Phase 3 schedule based on the criteria set by the School Reopening Task Force. Schools will be open five days a week for on-campus learning and follow the normal bell schedule. Some schools may experience temporary building closures accompanied by remote learning if there is a confirmed COVID-19 case.

All schools will follow this schedule until Friday, Sept. 11. The district will continue to track the latest COVID-19 data from the Hamilton County Health Department to determine if a phase change is needed. The schedule for Sept. 14 through Sept. 24 will be announced Friday, Sept. 4, due to Labor Day on Monday, Sept. 7. This will allow families a little over a week’s notice if there are any changes to the in-person learning schedule. 

In addition to offering SACC sites for full-day during hybrid learning (Phase 2), the district is also working with community organizations to provide virtual learning sites to support HCS at Home and remote learning days for families at low or no cost. Please see notice below. We will begin promoting these partnerships for families the week of August 31, so that they have options in the event that the district transitions to a remote learning configuration based on changes in public health data. 

Thank you for your continued grace and patience as we take the time needed to make the best decisions possible for the safety of our students and staff. Our belief is the best place for a student to learn is in the classroom, and we look forward to seeing our on-campus students five days a week beginning Aug. 31!

Hamilton County Schools is seeking leaders of faith-based and community-based organizations that are interested in launching Virtual Learning Centers to provide childcare and remote learning support for working families.

This is an opportunity for local organizations to fulfill a need in the community and to support the families they serve. There are multiple levels of engagement, everyone can participate in some way.

If you’re interested in launching a Virtual Learning Center, please fill out this form:

The district has also created a toolkit to provide guidance for interested partners: 

HCS Pledge

The HCS Reopening plan outlines specific procedures to ensure a safe environment for students and staff at school, and this plan will require students and staff to commit to certain healthy behaviors to protect those around them. 

We’re asking all Hamilton County Schools employees and families to take the HCS Pledge upon returning to school. Families can review the full pledge and sign the form in Power School.

Click HERE to read the HCS Pledge Instructions.

Click HERE to watch the HCS Pledge Video.

The HCS Pledge

Tech Tips for Families

To support families with remote learning, the district has created a user-friendly Tech Tips Toolkit. This toolkit provides information about the different platforms our schools use and tutorials to help families learn how to use them. Please share this toolkit with your students and families.

Click HERE for the Tech Tips Handout in English

Click HERE for the Tech Tips Handout in Spanish

Safety Patrol

5th grade only: for those of you wishing to become safety patrol we are now accepting applications.  Applications will close on the 19th.  Please have your online form and essay submitted by then.  The following form should give you all the information you need. 

Please click HERE for the safety patrol form.


We have created a Google Form for Apison's parents to use when they are having a problem with something related to digital learning. This Form can be completed for any technical/access problems for the Digital Learning Groups and the A/B Cohort groups that are also engaging in at home study.

Please click HERE to complete the AES Technology Help Request Form.

Parent University


Visit our Parent University webpage or YouTube Playlist for the tools families need to be First Day Ready! From technology training to whole child supports, we’ve added many resources to help you be full partners in your child’s education. Click on the image below for the full list of offerings.
Parent University Links


Dear Bentwood Cove Parents, Due to the construction of East Hamilton Middle School (East Brainerd Elementary School), a relief lane was created to ease the traffic on Bentwood Cove Drive. Parents are no longer allowed to park along Bentwood Cove Drive to wait for their student(s) to cross the crosswalk. NO PARKING signs will be posted along the drive. As a result, all Bentwood Cove students will become car riders. We will no longer walk the students to the crosswalk. Lane #1 in the front of the building is designated for Bentwood Cove parents allowing you to turn right to return to your neighborhood. Others who may choose to join Bentwood Cove parents in lane #1 are choosing to turn right to either go to your neighborhood or to East Hamilton Middle School/East Brainerd Elementary School.

On Friday, August 7th during registration, you will have an opportunity to pick up your new red car tag. Beginning on Wednesday, August 12th , all previous Bentwood Cove walkers will walk the car rider line and will meet you in lane #1.

We realize this is new to all of you but please understand that changes with new construction create challenges. This is a prime example and we are adjusting our traffic flow/pattern to accommodate the new build. We thank you, in advance, for your understanding and grace as we all become accustomed to this new change.

Mrs. Callie Stewart

Student Meals

Beginning Aug. 12, meals will be provided for students on online learning days. These meals will be provided at the price the student would normally pay if they were in their school building. Parents can apply for free and reduced meal benefits online Parents can apply for free and reduced meal benefits online HERE. Students must be enrolled in HCS to receive meals.

HCS Learning Continuum Students when the school or district has virtual learning days: Students will have the opportunity to take home meals to cover the days they are learning virtually.

HCS at Home Students: Beginning Aug. 12, parents may pick up meals on their student’s behalf each Wednesday between 9-10 a.m. through drive-up service at their child’s school. If parents have students enrolled in more than one school, they may pick up meals at any of the schools in which their children are enrolled.

Reading with Kellogs


It’s important that students read as much as possible, especially during summer to prevent learning loss. There is a Kellogg’s Feeding Reading program. Go to to learn about this program and see how you can get free books for your family by purchasing qualifying Kellogg's products. Each box earns one free Penguin Random House book. This is perfect for students because more than 100 different titles are available for grades preK through 8.

Happy reading!

Opening Schedule

The start of the 2020-2021 school year will look different from previous years, and to ensure families and staff have time to prepare for the new schedule, Hamilton County Schools is announcing the "Safe Start, Great Start" opening schedule for the first few weeks of the 2020-2021 school year.

As previously announced, Aug. 12-14 will follow a mini A/B cohort schedule to open the school year. Now, these first three instructional days will be followed by two full weeks of the hybrid learning schedule. The weeks of Aug. 17-21 and Aug. 24-28 will follow the A/B cohort schedule, allowing half-capacity with students grouped into an A-cohort or B-cohort to begin the school year.

Starting August 31, we will follow the phased approach and gating criteria outlined in our reentry plan to determine the in-person learning model. If the gating criteria data is the same on Aug. 31 as it is today, we will start with Phase 3 after our Safe Start window and open for on-campus learning five days a week.

This opening schedule is for families that selected Option 1 on-campus learning for the 2020-2021 school year. HCS at Home and Hamilton County Virtual School will open on a normal full-time remote learning schedule five days a week.

HCS COVID-19 Response Procedure

The School Reopening Task Force has developed a protocol for schools to follow if there is a positive COVID-19 case in a school building. The guidelines include information about what qualifies as an exposure and the process that will be followed if a school has a positive COVID-19 case.

In addition, the Tennessee Department of Health has developed the resources below for families:

HCS at Home Handbook

The district has developed an HCS at Home Handbook to guide families through our new full-time remote learning program.

Click here to OPEN the HCS at Home Handbook (English)

Click here to OPEN the HCS at Home Handbook (Spanish)

Back to School Bash!
Saturday, August 8th

We are kicking off the 2020-21 school year with our third annual Back to School Bash on Saturday, August 8 from 10am-1pm at the First Horizon Pavilion! This year's event will offer a safe, no-contact drive-thru experience for families to receive free backpacks filled with supplies. We hope to see you there!  

Back to School Bash

Back-to-School Drive Thru Bash - Volunteers Needed

Hamilton County Schools will host its 3rd Annual Back-to-School Bash on Saturday, August 8, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., at First Tennessee Pavilion. This drive-thru, no-contact event will provide HCS families with free backpacks filled with supplies and other items from community partners. Volunteers are needed to help with bag packing on Saturday, August 1, and backpack distribution on Saturday August 8. 

Click HERE to go to the Back to School Bash Volunteer Page!

School-Aged Child Care Summer Information

School-aged child care in Hamilton County Schools will begin on June 1, 2020, and will be expanded to 25 school site locations this year. The additional sites will help to keep the number of children at each site lower than summer programs in the past.


New principal selected for the fall

 Callie Stewart

Callie Stewart, assistant principal at Apison Elementary, will move into the principal's chair next year, replacing Ron Hughes, who is retiring at the end of this school year.  Hughes was an excellent mentor as he was selected 2014-15 Tennessee Principal of the Year.  Stewart is an accomplished, experienced administrator having served at Hillcrest, Woodmore, Hixson, and Apison elementary schools in Hamilton County as an assistant principal.

During her time as an assistant principal, she was instrumental in creating a parental involvement program as a culminating project for the Principal Leadership Academyserved on a local university education advisory board, and revised the institute's education curriculum and training process.  She also collaborated with faculty to develop an after-school tutorial program.  She taught math and science for six years at East Lake Academy of Fine Arts and Ooltewah Middle School.

In April 1999, she was selected as one of the first participants in the inaugural cohort of the Alternative Certification Program for Hamilton County Schools. She successfully completed the PEF Principal Leadership Academy Cohort 3, was a participant in Columbia University's Teacher College Writers' Program, and completed McRel Balanced Leadership training.

She holds bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a specialist degree from Tennessee Tech University.


Tennessee Aquarium Virtual Student Activities

The Tennessee Aquarium's education department has created a series of science activities for parents to complete at home with their kids, Weekday Wonders. These activities require minimum technology and can be completed with minimal supervision from parents or caregivers.

American Red Cross Information

American Red Cross volunteers and staff are working with local officials to provide help for those affected by severe storms that tore through Hamilton and Bradley counties on Easter Sunday.

Contact: If you or someone you know is need of assistance due to the storms, please call 1-800-RED CROSS.

How to Help: The Red Cross depends on financial donations to be able to provide disaster relief immediately. Help people affected by storms and countless other crises by visiting, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to help people prepare for, respond to and recover from these disasters.

EPB Quick Connect Free WiFi Sites Added

As of yesterday, March 25, EPB has added several new sites with free WiFi:

  • Ooltewah Middle/Wolftever Creek
  • Wallace A. Smith Elementary
  • Hixson Elementary
  • Middle Valley Elementary
  • Red Bank Elementary
  • Soddy Elementary
  • Boys & Girls Club - Highland Park
  • Spring Creek Elementary
  • Boys & Girls Club - East Lake
  • Missionary Heights (CHA)
  • College Hill (CHA)

EPB continues to install EPB Quick Connect free WiFi locations across the community. Sites will continue to be added, so check this website regularly for updates.

Playgrounds at Hamilton County schools closed due to the Safer at Home Executive Order

Playgrounds at Hamilton County schools are closed at this time due to the Safer at Home Executive Order Governor Lee issued on Monday, March 30, 2020.  Signs and caution tape will be visible in the areas that are closed at local schools.  Groups gathering at locations such as school playgrounds is discouraged as we work to slow the spread of coronavirus COVID-19.

Please help our community slow the spread of COVID-19 by staying at home as much as possible and observing the CDC guidelines.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • You should maintain a distance of at least six (6) feet between yourself and other individuals.
  • Do not gather in groups of 10 or more and always practice social distancing in groups.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you or your child are sick. A fever must be absent for 24-hours with no fever-reducing medication.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, use your elbow and not your hands to cover the sneeze or cough.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Preventative Measure Reminders from the CDC

The CDC recommends the following preventative measures for everyone:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. This means maintain a distance of at least six (6) feet.
  • Do not gather in groups of 10 or more.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you or your child are sick. A fever must be absent for 24-hours with no fever-reducing medication before returning to school.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, use your elbow and not your hands to cover the sneeze or cough.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

HCS Resources Page

On the district's website there is a landing page ( with resources for families and staff during the school closure. This website includes information about preventative measures, family resources, student meals, continued learning, frequently asked questions, and more. This page will be updated frequently throughout the school closure, so please continue to check back for more information.

 HCS Hotline

Tech Hotline 


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