New Wave Of Mass. Students Return To In-Person Learning Following February Vacation

Brockton will welcome back 700 high-needs students for in person learning in a hybrid model, with plans to bring even more students back next week. WBZ-TV's Kristina Rex reports.

Video Transcript

- Classes resumed today for kids who had a week off for February vacation. And as WBZ's Christina Rex shows us, more schools are going to be starting to phase in in-person learning this week.

CHRISTINA REX: Following February break, some Massachusetts students are back in the classroom for the first time since the pandemic hit.

MIKE THOMAS: March 12th is when we closed down last year. And it's the first time in a year. So we're thrilled to have our students coming back.

CHRISTINA REX: In Brockton, high-needs kids will start in-person learning Tuesday, followed by more students next week, after nearly a year of school at home.

MIKE THOMAS: I mean, it's been tough on our families. Their kids have been home for, like you said, a year. So, child care issues and having their young ones home for an entire year-- it's been so tough on our families.

CHRISTINA REX: Kids are back in Fitchburg and Fall River, too, mask-clad and socially distanced.

DAVID DERUOSI: We're anxious. We'd like to see these buildings back in with kids.

CHRISTINA REX: In Saugus, most students will return for the first time starting Thursday, after COVID infection numbers pushed back hybrid learning multiple times.

DAVID DERUOSI: There's going to be no good time. We're going to come back in March. It will be April vacation. Then you're going to-- so our policies are in place.

We're ready. We've been ready. Is it going to be perfect? Probably not.

CHRISTINA REX: The return to class comes after a week of vacation, when the Department of Education asked people to limit get-togethers and avoid travel to stop the spread of COVID-19.

KIM DRISCOLL: I think we're always nervous, whether it's a vacation week or an activity, the Super Bowl, or something that's going to cause people to try and congregate.

CHRISTINA REX: In Salem, fighting potential COVID infections from vacation comes down to testing. Starting this week, all students will be tested for coronavirus weekly through a first of its kind pool-testing program in the state.

KIM DRISCOLL: But it's a peace of mind. You're in classroom. We are in school. This is one way we can keep everybody safe.

CHRISTINA REX: In Salem, Christina Rex, WBZ News.