Boston welcomes back some students for in-person learning

BOSTON (WHDH) – The City of Boston welcomed back some of its youngest students to the classroom Monday.

Students in preschool through third grade returned to in-person learning through a hybrid model, with Group A going into school for two days a week beginning Monday and Group B set to go into school for two days a week starting Thursday.

“I’m not going to rush our kids back into school but also don’t want to see our kids out of school for the entire school year, so this process is a safe process and we’re going to continue to move forward with our reopening,” Mayor Martin Walsh said.

The return to the classroom is welcomed news for many parents who made big adjustments when schools went fully remote.

“They were learning but it’s just harder especially if you’re not home to watch them get on the computer when they’re supposed to be,” said Lenny Primas whose 5-year-old daughter Desire attended class for the first time this year.

Every student in the district will continue to learn remotely on Wednesdays so schools can be cleaned and sanitized between groups.

All schools are getting air purifiers and frequent air quality testing, top-grade filters in all HVAC systems, medical-grade personal protective equipment for staff, and disposable masks for students and staff.

Boston Teachers Union President Jessica Tang says she is pleased with the precautions the city is taking but wishes the state would give teachers a higher priority to get vaccinated.

“It does I think cause a lot of concern still for educators and the fact that we could have vaccinations for educators but the state has chosen not to is problematic,” she said.

Mather Elementary second grade teacher Lea Serena said she was thrilled to see her students but that the set-up is going to be an adjustment.

“We’re going to figure out ways to make it work, it’s not going to be perfect, and this year is definitely going to go down in the memory books, but educators are working hard for our students,” she said.

Her classroom has extra storage and socially distanced desks to make sure students have as little contact with each other as possible.

One window must stay open in every classroom no matter the weather.

Boston Public Schools students in grades fourth through eighth are set to return to the classroom in two weeks, while high schoolers are expected to return at the end of the month.

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