Cumberland Valley prepares to bring more students back to the classroom

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Beginning Monday, April 12, students at Cumberland Valley School District’s middle and high schools will return to the classroom four days a week.

The schedule isn’t completely back to normal. High school students will have half days, to account for about 800 students still opting for virtual learning.

“We’re planning for the fall where we will have a fully virtual option but also have fully face-to-face, 5 days a week,” said David Christopher, Superintendent of Cumberland Valley School District.

“I’m definitely looking forward to going back four days a week because I learn a lot better when I’m in the classroom with my teachers,” said Leah Schreffler, a sophomore at Cumberland Valley High School.

Students and faculty are eager to get back, even if it is for a little while.

“If our kids have a positive end to the school year, if they’re back in classes, have a better, more normal school feeling, that will be the first time they’ve been in that situation in a year and I think it will be more impactful for us when we come back in the fall,” Christopher said.

Students will notice changes like desks set up three feet apart and schools will close for two days instead of three if there are reports of COVID cases.

“Once we move into in-person instruction, we want to ensure that we create conditions that allow for schools to continue to remain open safely as well,” said Noe Ortega, Acting Secretary of the Department of Education.

The Department of Health hopes that by the fall, students will be armed with the vaccine.

“We are on target to at least vaccinate teenagers and that will certainly help mitigate the spread,” said Dr. Wendy Braund, COVID-19 Response Director of the Department of Health.

The Department of Education said it will soon release new guidance for events like graduation and prom.

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