Classes have already started for Stockbridge schools, but next week the district will begin transitioning students into face-to-face learning.
Michael Gurecki, second grade teacher at Smith Elementary School in Stockbridge, is teaching 23 students this year, but five have chosen to learn from home.
Gurecki said the kids learning from home won’t skip a beat.
“If they’re choosing online, they’re going to still do our morning meeting with us at 10. So as a whole class, we’ll meet in the morning. Everyone in here will be doing the same stuff kids at home are doing,” Gurecki said.
Gurecki said online students will be able to interact with the students in the classroom.
“I’ll just have the screen pointing towards me through the protective glass, so it keeps me safe and keeps the kids safe. I’ll unmute them so their voices can be heard in the classroom, so they can kind of contribute and share things with kids in here,” said Gurecki.
Gurecki and the school are trying to reduce as much student-to-student contact as possible.
Desks are six feet apart and the school installed new water fountains to refill water bottles. This will remove kids from touching the water fountain.
In-person students will go to school four days a week, but on Wednesday’s they’ll learn from home.
Stockbridge Superintendent Karl Heidrich said Wednesday’s will be used to deep clean the schools and for teachers to plan.
“For cleaning purposes, our buildings will have a deep clean every two days. Also to serve, equity within our students between the online learning and the in-person learning students,” said Heidrich.
Stockbridge is taking extra precautions first bringing back early learners and students transitioning into a new school.
Smith Elementary School and junior high will transition into hybrid learning Tuesday.
Two weeks after that, the school district will transition all other students to hybrid learning.
“Assure that we have all of our resources devoted to those students at the time to make sure they’re safe, secure, following procedures and protocols. Two weeks later, we bring the other two buildings in and assure their safety,” said Heidrich.
By August 21, all schools will be using hybrid learning.