PRSD ready to go as students return next week

·2 min read

The rural school division is ready and excited to have students back for in-person classes on Monday.

Prairie Rose School Division superintendent Roger Clarke says staff and students have been working diligently with online learning and many are eager to get back to the classroom.

“We were all listening to the (Thursday) announcement keenly,” said Clarke. “We’re happy and we’re ready to go.

“We were ready before Christmas so we’ll definitely be ready now.”

Cleaning staff have been working over the extended break from in-school learning to get every corner of every school cleaned in preparation for the return of students.

“Cleaning staff have been working, and are still working,” said Clarke. “They’re getting to things they may have not been able to get to before. With downtime at Christmas, Easter and in the summer, we get into those deeper areas and give them a really good cleaning.”

PRSD was a little late getting its initial shipment of PPE from Alberta Health Services in September, and relied on donations of masks and sanitizer for the first days of school. The board is getting another shipment of PPE sent to it from the government to help it make its supplies last for the rest of the school year.

“We’re getting a little low on PPE, but we got an announcement that Prairie Rose would be getting another shipment,” he said. “That’s going to be quite helpful for us, especially the masks.”

Clarke says a small number of children have been attending school in person who have complex learning needs. Students in rural areas without internet access have also been able to go into school.

“We’ve worked with everyone who has needed accommodations,” said Clarke.

Clarke added that he has heard good reports from principals on at-home learning this time around.

“I’m hearing that it has been much different than March,” he said. “Our goal was to keep learning the same as if it were in a classroom so we could pick back up when students returned.”

Mo Cranker, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News