Holliston schools taking longer to go back to the classroom as they ensure safety measures are in place for the fall

Holliston schools taking longer to go back to the classroom as they ensure safety measures are in place for the fall

HOLLISTON, Mass. — The pandemic is causing every school district its own challenges.

In Holliston, some grades will now be going back in-person learning later than planned. The school district had to modify the schedule as they work to fill some last minute staff support positions.

“We just have to go with it there is not a lot a lot we can do,” said Anne Silva, a parent.

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“We have had to delay a little bit of the times staggering out but we are going to be on track to bring our middle school and high school and upper elementary as well,” said Holliston School Superintendent Dr. Susan Kustka.

Kustka says they are still working to fill dozens of support staff positions created to help deal with new protocols.

“Most of it is the health and safety monitors because those are new positions we added to help students to the bathrooms, help with some of the lunch things, make sure the kids have their masks on right - and all those things require extra hands,” said Kustka.

She explained the school will be holding K-3 classes five days a week, so that requires a lot of staffing already. While they are filling more positions, middle and upper elementary schools are going back in person a week a later. High school students are going back in-person two weeks after that.

“It is a little disappointing," said Silver. "Obviously I think everyone is interested in going back for at least a hybrid model but we know they have a lot to take care of.”

“In any situation I would advocate for all students in person but when we have to prioritize some students we have to look at the most significant needs," said Kustka.

High school senior Matt Perera has no problem with the younger students being prioritized. “I can’t imagine kindergarten without seeing anyone," said Perera. He says he’s already thinking of ways to stay close to his friends and fully experience senior year.

“We have to put more work into being creative seeing everybody and I think that is how we are going to remember it," said Perera.

The superintendent is also telling parents there could be changes after the start of the year as they learn more about the virus and how the system in place is working.

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