LANSING, Mich. — After months of virtual learning, the students of Lansing School District were more than excited to return to the classroom Monday.
“I’m excited because I get to make friends,” said Willow Jackson, a kindergartner at Forest View Elementary.
The district welcomed around 9,700 students back to classrooms for the first day of school. Roughly 300 more students will continue to take classes online.
“I feel really good cautiously optimistic,” said Superintendent Ben Shuldiner. “We have to deal with COVID and a nationwide bus shortage and we have to deal with all sorts of other things, but today on this wonderful first day, I really do believe that we’re doing great work.”
In recent months, the district announced COVID-19 precautions that are now in effect. Those precautions include requiring everyone to wear a mask while inside district buildings and requiring all staff members to get a COVID vaccine.
“We want to make sure that everyone feels excited, and I think they’re really excited and there will be all sorts of wonderful things going on this year,” Shuldiner said.
Despite COVID, students and parents are ready to kick off the new school year with a sense of normalcy.
“I’m so excited because we’ve been home,” parent Alanah Durfee. “We haven’t done a lot with many people, so for him to be here and make friends and to play with the friends that he was virtual with last year, He’s so excited.”
“I like going to school and I’ve been waiting for a long time,” said Forest View first grader Victoria Evans.
Shuldiner spent his day welcoming students at the Beekman Center to spread awareness about the district’s special education programs.