JOPLIN, Mo. — Hybrid schedules will soon be a thing of the past at Joplin High School, as freshmen are already back in their seats five days a week.
The high school campus is already starting to feel busier. And that feeling will only grow as the school phases back to full in-person classes.
John Vilela, JHS Freshman, said, “We’re all coming back to school and it’s all getting back to normal.”
But a new normal for freshman whose only experience is coming to class every other day.
“Because I haven’t experienced how crowded it can be in here – I really haven’t experienced how crowded it can get in school altogether because this is just the freshmen coming back. You know it’s not all of us.”
It’s a phased return to full-time, in-person class. Freshmen this week, sophomores start Monday.
Steve Gilbreth, JHS Principal, said, “We are so ready to have kids back and I feel confident that we can do it and remain safe.”
JHS Principal Dr. Steve Gilbreth points out JHS quarantine rates were much lower than other large schools in the state. And he points to better treatments, more vaccines, and a better understanding of covid, reinforcing the plan to attend school in-person full time.
“The lessons that we’ve learned from this, just a year later.”
Gilbreth adds the interacting in class is the best plan, and one that many students are embracing.
“I can’t tell you how many kids have come back and told me, ‘I wasn’t sure I wanted to come back but now that I’m back it’s great.”
Juniors will return to full-time on March 15th and every single student will be back when the senior class goes five days a week in-person after Spring break on March 29th.
That could change. Staff members are monitoring numbers both at school and throughout the city and say they could adjust the plan if numbers start to rise.