ANTELOPE, Calif. (KTXL) — Monday was the first day back on campus in more than six months for students at Barrett Ranch Elementary in Antelope.
“I was very excited that they were one of the first schools to come back and they asked us — they gave us a survey to see if we all wanted to come back and I think the majority of us all said ‘yes,’” mother Elizabeth Pulido explained.
Drop off at Barrett Ranch was much less crowded than a normal Monday morning.
“They have a closed campus. So we get to come here, drop our kid off, wave bye, and they go on their way,” Pulido said.
Parents took photos of their young students with their masks, a clear sign of the ongoing pandemic.
“My second grader wears a mask everywhere anyway, so she was OK putting it on and keeping it on,” Pulido said.
Mask requirements are just one of the measures the school is taking to keep kids safe as they return to campus.
The Dry Creek Joint Elementary School District has adopted a hybrid-learning model, splitting students into a.m. and p.m. schedules to keep classrooms at 50% capacity.
Students will stay in their pre-assigned cohorts and classrooms will be deep cleaned in the middle of the day between schedules.
Students are not allowed to eat on campus or share supplies.
“They email us daily to make sure that we all feel comfortable sending them back. They’re washing their hands as soon as they get in the door, so it’s been nice,” Pulido said. “They’ve communicated beautifully with us.”
There are a lot of new rules for the K-5th graders to remember on top of regular hand washing and sanitizing, but Pulido said her kids are just excited to get out of the house and see their friends again.
“We could have kept them home to do the Zoom meetings but when your kid asks you every day if they can go back to school to see their friends, you kind of weigh the pros and cons and for us,” Pulido said. “There was more pros of going back than cons.”