Breaking news: district plans for return

Photo by Renee Nieckula
Ben Tuominen, dean’s assistant, measures desk spacing to follow proper social distancing guidelines.

Raven Easterly, In-depth Editor

District 202 is currently making plans on how students and teachers will make a safe return to come into the schools. Right now there is no set date for when high school students will return, but they hope to have a full return between November 16 and January 19. Students will be divided into “A” and “B” groupings for attendance, to limit the number of students in the school at one time.

Currently, there is tape on the floors of the building, restricting hallways and staircases so students only move in one direction throughout the building; wider hallways will be split in both directions.

Prekindergarten through 12th-grade multi-needs special needs students will return to in-person learning on October 26, 2020. Preschool and kindergarten students will return the week of November 2, 2020

Teachers will return to school on October 15th, however, there are some teachers who chose to stay home for varying reasons. For those who don’t return, Chris Chlebeck, Principal, respects their choice.

“We know that there are teachers, who for a number of reasons, are not able to come back at this time.  I absolutely support their decision to stay home.  However, I very much look forward to the day that everyone, including students, are back in our normal routine,” Chlebeck said.

It is not promised that a vaccine for COVID-19 will come out anytime soon, so if students do go back before the vaccine is created and released to the public, there will be strict guidelines.

“For when we return to in-person education, if there is no vaccine, masks will be required for all unless there is a medical reason verified by a physician or doctor,” Lane Abrell, Superintendent, said.

Teachers have been taking place in emergency drills since their return, so students will not have to go through more drills in a shortened period of time due to online learning. The drills will be run the same as they have been for years prior, only that there will be roughly half as many students present, allowing students and staff to spread out and social distance.

“We have been running drills with staff only that count towards the number of drills we have to do per year.  So when students return to in-person learning there will not be a large influx of drills,” Matthew Ambrose, assistant principal, said.  “We will spend adequate time reviewing all the drills with students through classroom teachers to make sure everyone is ready to go when the drill comes.”