Back to school in the middle of the year

Kara Bade

Everyone is wondering when life will go back to normal. One of the first things that may be returning is in-person school. While the original return date has been postponed, many still want to know when students will be heading back. High School students are expected to return to in-person on March 8th. With the new date being determined, there is information that students want to know, such as the number of students returning. 

The number is quite fluid. As the community spread has grown there are families that have decided to change from in-person to virtual learning. Currently, we have about 25 percent returning.”

— Assistant principal Laura McKinney

Even though only about a quarter of students are returning, most are still wondering what a normal school day will look like while having to follow COVID-19 guidelines. Students will be going to school four days a week, with Wednesday being virtual learning or independent study. The one-lunch schedule will have to change to three separate lunch periods spanning 30 minutes each. Students will also have assigned lunch seating for contact tracing purposes. Students will also see changes such as one-way hallways, to reduce contact, as well as classrooms with no more than 15 students each with desk shields to block air contact. Students will be required to wear masks at all times except while eating or drinking during lunch. For arrival and departure, there will be designated drop off doors for drivers, walkers, and car riders. 

All of these changes may have some students debating whether they want to switch to in-person or just finish the school year at home. If a student has chosen in-person learning, they will have the ability to switch back to virtual if they feel they need to. However, due to various planning factors, if a student has chosen virtual, they will not be allowed to later opt for in-person learning. 

   With all these changes, there are still surely more to come. Students and families need to remember that everything is still uncertain this year. 

“I think the best advice I can give students, teachers, parents, etc. is that everything is fluid. As we approach our year anniversary with COVID shut-downs, we all need to take deep breaths and understand that things are always changing and probably will always change. Nothing is the set in stone, and nothing is perfect,” McKinney said “We just need to do the best we can at all times, don’t allow ourselves to fall into a negative frame of mind, and help one another to do the best we can.”