Many Duluth secondary and middle students back in the classroom |

Many Duluth secondary and middle students back in the classroom

Alejandra Palacios
Updated: March 08, 2021 10:42 PM
Created: March 08, 2021 04:16 PM

An exciting day began for Duluth Public School middle and high school students who haven't been able to step foot on school grounds in a year due to the health pandemic. That changed Monday morning with students transitioning to a hybrid learning model that allows them to come back to school in-person.

An overwhelming feeling of happiness was felt as students walked into school and filled up the hallways again and as busses and cars pulled up to drop kids off at school.

"We were doing distance learning for like the whole school year and it's kinda surprising that we got to go back so I'm kinda stoked," said Carter Stewart, a 6th grader at Lincoln Park Middle School.

"I'm really excited, really anxious and really couldn't wait to get started and get here and greet the kids," said Tom Tusken, the principal of Denfeld High School.

Even with face masks and all, you could see the emotion in students' eyes. They were welcomed with signs, balloons, and lots of cheers and claps.

"It is a huge relief. I'm very glad to be back. I have a big dose of nostalgia coming in again," said Wyatt Smith, a senior at Denfeld.

"I'm extremely happy. It's so good to see some friends that I know. I'll see the incoming freshmen I know and  welcome them into their first day back because I know they're all looking forward to it," said Madisyn Hindermann, a senior at Denfeld.

The new hybrid schedule is starting gradually, with 6th, 9th and 12th graders phased into in-person classes first, which will be twice a week, three classes a day. Then, 7th, 8th, 10th and 11th graders will be phased in next week. With the goal of transitioning to a four day in-person schedule at the end of March.

"Every step is a little bit of another step towards normalcy and hopefully we can keep continuing down this path," said Brian Kazmierczak, the principal of Lincoln Park Middle School.

"It’s kinda good so we can communicate with other people and don’t have to sit on the computers all day," said Stewart.

"I think the biggest takeaway is appreciate what you have, because you never know when it's gonna be gone. We thought last year a two week break was just two weeks and then we missed out on an entire year," said Hindermann.

After what has been a very challenging year, each and everyone of these students has persevered and showed a level of resiliency and strength beyond their years that they will carry with them in this exciting new school experience.


Alejandra Palacios

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