President Steve DiBiagio, in a September 22 email sent out to the school community, announced that JC would be allowing groups of students from all grade levels to come into the building for in-person classes beginning on October 5.
The hybrid schedule for the first two weeks will allow all students to begin classes an hour late starting at 9 am. Beginning at 8 am, students in the building will receive an orientation in the auditorium.
According to Principal Tom Durkin, orientations will include “explaining all of the new protocols that we all will need to follow: wearing masks, hand washing, and maintaining physical distancing. Mr. Fabriziani will review the SchoolDocs form; Mrs. Webster will go over symptom checks.”
To limit the number of people in the building for the first two weeks, 25% of two grade levels will attend school at once.
For example, on Monday, October 5, freshmen and seniors with last names of A-D will attend classes in the building. This will continue by last name until S-Z on Thursday, October 8.
The groups will change when 25% of sophomores and juniors are invited on campus on scheduled days from Friday, October 9 through Friday, October 16.
Each student who wants to come into the building for in-person classes will have the opportunity once over the two-week period.
The goal is to transition to having 25% of the entire student body in the building Mondays-Thursdays beginning October 19. Students at home will log into classes virtually.
Beginning on October 23, Fridays will act as asynchronous learning days in which live classes will not meet formally. Students will complete their teachers’ posted work on their own time as long as they meet assigned deadlines.
This plan will be in place until November 24, the day before Thanksgiving break. In regard to what to expect after the break Mr. Durkin said, “We are using two-week intervals of data to make a determination, so after Thanksgiving is too far out for us to announce a plan. Our hope is that we can at least maintain the number of students coming in or increase it, but if there are any significant changes in the metrics in the wrong direction, that would require a different approach.”
While in the building, students will be assigned locations to go during off mods. Mr. Durkin said, “Starting Monday, October 5, seniors who have an off mod will be assigned to the Learning Commons while freshmen with off mods will be assigned to the cafeteria.”
While it has been said that JC is going to try to give students the opportunity to be outside in the fresh air as much as possible, the weather does not always cooperate. When the weather is not conducive for outside activities, the school will be “utilizing larger spaces for students to go during off mods and during lunch. For example, we are looking at the Learning Commons, cafeteria, Brown Room, auditorium, and the Lower Gym,” Mr. Durkin said.
Currently, advisories are not meeting formally, but advisors are checking in with their students weekly. Mr. Durkin said this will change. “Starting October 5, advisories will be meeting in a hybrid fashion.” This means students online and in-person will meet with their advisories.
Being in person will also allow students to use MSDE textbooks, and teachers now will have the opportunity to issue them.
Another change students can expect to see is related to the stairwells. Students will be utilizing one way stairwells either going up or down.
Senior Lauren Rossi said, “As a senior, I’m excited to be able to finally experience my senior year in person to make more everlasting memories with the people I love.”