IUSD hybrid students go back in-person amidst COVID-19 concerns

SAYING+HI+TO+HYBRID%3A+Seniors+Claire+Wang+and+Emily+Yu%0Awear+face+masks+as+they+socially+distance+by+The+Oak+during+break.

Coco Tsaur

SAYING HI TO HYBRID: Seniors Claire Wang and Emily Yu wear face masks as they socially distance by The Oak during break.

Lana Hwang, Staff Writer

IUSD entered the hybrid model of learning last month, in which students attend school in-person twice a week while following safety protocols set in place by the district.

Under the hybrid model, all people on campus are required to wear approved masks and social distance. Classrooms are stocked with hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes— which are used when students enter and exit classrooms—as well as one air purifier per classroom, purported to filter all the air in each room every 30 minutes. Students are required to wipe down their chairs and desks upon entering the classroom.

“Being back in the classroom and creating art with my students has been very rejuvenating,” art teacher Kimberly Rohrs said. “For me, it is good to be back. Art taught virtually is just not the same.”

Additionally, 10-minute breaks are held at different times for first and second floor classrooms to limit the amount of people outside at one time. The school also employs contact tracing when students are in classes, on break and in bathrooms, in case of a positive case. Students are split into Cohorts A and B, with Cohort A attending school in person on Tuesday and Thursday and with Cohort B attending in person on Wednesday and Friday in reduced class sizes. Seventh and eighth periods are fully online to minimize on-campus time.

“Sometimes the hybrid schedule is difficult to keep track of, and having each class in-person only once a week can be confusing,” junior Adrian Chen said.

While attending classes at home, students either log onto Zoom meetings to learn virtually alongside those at school or study independently.

However, going back in-person comes with significant health risks. One Northwood student has already tested positive for COVID-19, and those in contact with that individual have received self-quarantine directions from the school.

“We encourage families to be proactive and to reinforce the importance of hand-washing, physical distancing and face coverings to limit the spread of the coronavirus,” IUSD said in a public statement. “If your child has any symptoms associated with the coronavirus, make sure they stay home and get tested.”