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Unified School District of De Pere has architect looking at buildings to help bring kids back safely

We first told you in December, students will start to return to the classroom in January.
USDD has architect looking at building layout to bring kids back to school safely.
USDD has architect looking at building layout to bring kids back to school safely.(WBAY)
Published: Jan. 4, 2021 at 10:32 PM CST
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DE PERE, Wis. (WBAY) - The Unified School District of De Pere is trying to get a handle on how to safely bring all students back to the classroom five days a week.

We first told you in December, students will start to return to the classroom in January.

On Monday, the board directed district administration to look at three factors when it comes to bringing all students back to the classroom: CDC gating criteria, how quarantined employees and staff will impact schools opening, and how to effectively social distance.

“It feels like it’s probably the most uncertain month of the year when you’re in a pandemic and trying to get kids back to school, but I am confident our administration will do their homework,” said board member Jeff Mirkes.

Superintendent Ben Villarruel told the board the district has Berners Schober architect firm looking at how each building is set up to give staff feedback on how to accommodate social distancing guidelines.

The firm has worked with the district in the past.

“Once we understand from the architect, yes, this is what a classroom can hold, we can run scenarios in terms of, okay, in this classroom on average three students have to be displaced,” said Villarruel.

He says the district hopes to hear from the architect later this month.

As we’ve reported, students in 4K-6 grade will return to the classroom full time on Monday, January 11.

Students in grades 7-12 will start hybrid learning on January 19, going to school 2 days a week and virtually the other 3 days.

The conversation on how to get all kids back full time is ongoing.

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