Des Moines "back to school" plan calls for on-line and in-person classes

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Students in the Des Moines School District will be in their classrooms only one or two days a week this fall.

The district's pandemic "Return to Learn" plan calls for kindergartners through eighth graders to be in their school buildings two days a week, while high school student will be there one day a week. Students will spend the rest of the week in on-line classes.

The district's top administrator says they know it's not a "magic bullet" for the return to school next month.

"There is a group in our community who would prefer for us to open school on August 26th just like we did last year and have at it--take what comes and deal with the consequences. There's another group that thinks we shouldn't even be considering opening the doors to our schools and require everyone to learn from home" says Superintendent Thomas Ahart.

He says students at all grade levels will also have the option to take all their classes on-line.

Ahart says the district's plan is an effort to set up classrooms to provide social distancing.

"We will be using space in our schools to ensure that we have socially distanced our students. There is not a lot of additional capacity to have students who aren't slated to be there that day...there thay day" he says.

The district's plan also requires students and staff who will be in school buildings to wear face coverings.

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