Back to school full-time for grades K-8 in Worcester on Monday

WORCESTER — It’s back to school full time starting Monday for elementary and middle school students in Worcester.

While elementary and middle schoolers in most districts across Massachusetts are already back to school five days a week, Worcester received a waiver from state education leaders allowing them more time to bring students back in-person five days a week.

Worcester students had been fully remote for most of the school year, from September through the end of March. They started a hybrid learning model with two days of in-person learning on March 29.

“I think it’s great, I think these guys definitely need to be back in school, not only for the educational side of things, but also for the social interaction,” said Jim Wrubel, a father in Worcester.

Wrubel’s daughter and son return to Worcester Arts Magnet School five days a week starting Monday.

He says he and his wife split time working from home over the last year to help their kids with remote learning, which hasn’t been easy.

“They definitely need that in person interaction with their teachers and their peers, and the teachers you can see it on the teachers too, you hear it all the time when you’re passing by during their Zoom calls with their teachers and you can tell the teachers miss their kids too,” said Wrubel.

Wrubel says he wishes his kids went back to fully in person like most other districts in the state about a month ago, but he’s glad it’s finally happening for his kids this week.

“I think it’s definitely a big step in the right direction towards normalcy for these guys,” said Wrubel.

Even though it’s already May, parents like Wrubel say it’ll be worth it for students to reconnect in person with teachers and friends for the last few weeks of the school year.

“I also think it’s important for these kids to at least have closure and say goodbye to their school because a lot of them had a lot of great memories, they’re great friends and you know they made a lot of great memories,” said Wrubel.

Only grades K-8 return to fully in person in Worcester this week, and school district leaders say they’re considering bringing high school students back on May 17.

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