In-person school is back in session for some Palo Alto students

In-person school on Monday is back in session for some Palo Alto Unified students as the district starts its phase reopening across the city.

Students haven’t been in their classrooms since march so this is a big day.

During the phased-in approach, kindergarten through first graders will go back to an actual classroom.

On Oct. 26, 2nd and 3rd graders will return to their classrooms, following by 4th and 5th graders in November.

Middle and high school students will go back in January.

The school board voted unanimously last month to return to in-person learning despite concerns from parents and staff, according to the Palo Alto Weekly. 

The Palo Alto Educators Association said 90% of elementary teachers who responded to a union survey aren’t comfortable going back to school through November, according to the Palo Alto Daily Post. 

Superintendent Don Austin told KTVU on Monday that even those nervous about some of the unknowns "expressed gratitude for the return and an eagerness to see students again. Despite some of the challenging issues we needed to work through, our team wants to serve our kids.”

It’s important to note – parents who don’t feel comfortable with their kids going to school can continue distance learning this year.

But there are a lot of precautions being taken so students – parents and staff all feel safe.

Each school has a contact person for PPE – schools have been modified with signs and social distancing.

Staff and students will have to cover their faces while on their campuses.

And schools will be disinfected after everyone leaves for the day.

The district says there’s been extensive training to get to this point.

The next school board meeting is scheduled for Tuesday.  There will be a public comment period where parents will likely express their opinions on the reopenings