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What some Tri-State school staff learned from being back in the classroom

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Posted at 5:49 AM, Aug 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-10 07:19:49-04

Many schools are going back to in-person learning this month, and some school staff are reflecting on what they've learned shifting back to the classroom.

Boone County Schools' Deputy Superintendent Eric McCarter said communication with school district families was a key component when transitioning from one learning model to another.

"I think that the key to it is developing relationships with your families," he said. "Working together as a staff and just being as being empathetic to the students as well."

McCarter thinks about 90% of the district's in-person classes were about 90% full in spring, and he said many students stayed on campus for summer classes, too.

"I just think socially and emotionally kids need to be in a building just to be connected with something," McCarter said.

In Middletown, middle and high school students have the choice of learning in-person or virtually, but all elementary students have to go back to the classroom.

Beth Hendricks, the principal of Amanda Elementary in Middletown, said she is preparing for a full campus, but her staff know some people are nervous.

"They're still a little fearful," she said. "But, of course, we know that the protocols that we used for safety last year, we will institute again this year... We're really going to focus more on the student and let the student be the guide to their learning. We're going to be asking and listening to how they learn best."

McCarter said moving back to in-person learning was hard, but he believes it is been good.

"(The students) missed their identity of being in that school," he said. "I mean, a lot of kids were suffering without being able to connect with other people."

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