ROCHESTER, Minn. - Monday marks a transition back to pre-pandemic days for students as Rochester Public Schools is transitioning its PreK - 5th grade students from a hybrid model to full in-person learning five days a week.
RPS is planning on returning all secondary students to the classroom on April 5.
Parent Nick Fernholz has a child in second grade as well as fifth grade.
He says the change felt a bit like the first day of school for his children and he hopes getting back into the classroom will help them get safely back on track with their education.
He explained, “I hope everyone is being safe. I know we're trying the best we can and I really think it's benefiting the kids the most. I think getting them back into a routine is so important for kids, having that constant routine, and getting back into that so it's not 'These days I go here and these days I'm in my pajamas the whole day' Just getting back into that routine will be really great for everybody.”
However, Fernholz also says he believes this experience will be one that both of his children will remember for the rest of their lives.
He added, “They lived through history. I mean, no other kids have ever had to go through a year pretty much of not having hands on learning or a teacher every day or that kind of learning. I said, ‘I know this is really hard but you're going to tell your kids about this.’ This will be something you’ll look back on in 20 or 30 years.”
The district does say students who have chosen to will continue with distance learning for the remainder of the school year.