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RPS secondary students return to in-person learning

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- Rochester Public Schools middle and high school students headed back to their classrooms Monday after more than a year of distance learning.

Some students at Kellogg Middle School said they were excited to be back, while others expressed some anxiety about having a new routine.

Brother and sister Isaac and Sawyer Schwanke said they were more than ready to be back.

"'Finally' is the the only way to describe this feeling," Isaac said. "It's been too long. I hope to see my friends."

"I'm so excited to see my friends," Sawyer said. "I've just been sitting in the house doing nothing."

Sixth and ninth graders attended an orientation a couple weeks ago to prepare them for the first day. This will be very first time they will learn in their respective school buildings.

Kellogg Middle School Principal Angi McAndrews said staff is excited too. She said they are trying to make everything seem as normal as possible, but there will be some changes.

"There will be social distancing in the classrooms and not as much group work to keep kids at a distance," McAndrews said. "There are assigned seats in the cafeteria, which isn't going to be very popular, but it's necessary."

Students will follow an eight period day, and classes will dismiss 30 minutes early at 2 p.m. so teachers can have more time for things like lesson planning.

Megan Zemple

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