February 8, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

St. Joseph Grade School to stay on hybrid schedule through end of school year

St. Joseph Grade School Superintendent Todd Pence said he is recommending the grade school and middle school keep their hybrid schedule through the end of the year.

Currently students either go in the mornings or afternoons every day.


During the Monday night board meeting, Pence told the board he may return to the Board of Education at their April 12 meeting to discuss bring all the students back every day for the last six weeks.


“If the numbers keep going the way they are we could look at coming back for six weeks,” Pence said. “That is something we would have to work together with faculty and staff.”


However, a day and one COVID-19 positive student changed that.


In an email to parents on Tuesday, Pence outlined the plan for the rest of the school year- which is staying with the hybrid schedule.


Pence said 12 students are quarantining after exposure to the COVID-19 positive student at an extracurricular activity and two more are quarantining after exposure to the positive student on the bus.


“With our case today that pretty well makes our decision for us regarding the rest of the year,” Pence said.  “I think that with all the youth sports starting again I think we are going to continue to see kids having to quarantine.  So I really don’t see things changing unless IDPH changes their quarantine rules.”


Pence told the board that many students were doing well despite the pandemic.


“In some instances, we are getting as much done in three hours with half the kids as we would with five hours with all the kids,” Pence said.


Pence said that a parent survey said that 55 percent of parents wanted the district to keep the current schedule.


“I think the majority of our parents one of the main reasons is they have a schedule,” Pence said.”They have daycare lined up and we have to weigh that too.”

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