High school students in Springfield Public Schools will go to class in person four days a week beginning February 1.
According to the district, high school classes will move to in-person for all students on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Wednesday will still be a virtual learning day so facilities can be cleaned. Currently half of SPS high school students attend on Monday and Tuesday and half on Thursday and Friday.
District officials say the decision came after “a detailed review of COVID-19 health data following Winter Break” in collaboration with the Springfield-Greene County Health Department.
Those who are currently in full-time virtual learning will be able to continue that mode of education.
According to SPS, students who are eligible for bus transportation will receive information by the end of this week about any adjustments to the time and location and pick up and drop off.
A decision about whether to restore in-person learning to five days a week is expected by the end of the third quarter in March.
Parents and students have mixed feelings about the decision. On the SPS Facebook page, comments range from those who feel the decision is not a good idea with a new variant of COVID-19 that's currently in several U.S. states to those who are happy the district made the decision.
An SPS student, Sean Lay, has started a petition on change.org to keep the schedule the same. He said, “This is outright a poor decision from the stance of public health and safety.” As of Saturday, 2500 people had signed the petition.
One of those who signed is Cydney Curtis who said, "I do not feel safe going to school as it is. This would only make matters worse if we were to go to school with the entirety of the student body for 4 days a week."