ASHLAND, KY (WOWK) – The new school year for Ashland Independent Schools is officially underway, and students and staff are thrilled to be back in person.
“A lot of students don’t have the motivation to be remote learners, so being in school helps them stay on task because they have a teacher there like holding them accountable for getting their work done,” said Kristina Maynard, a teacher at Paul Blazer High School.
Students said they think in-person learning will benefit them both academically and mentally.
“Academically I think it will help me a lot,” said 11th grade student, Isaiah Igram. “I think a majority of people need to be in class with a teacher. Mentally, I think it’s just going to be a good experience to interact with friends and have a good time.”
As students and staff head back into the classroom, masks are required for all staff, students and visitors in all Kentucky schools regardless of vaccination status.
“It’s kind of a bummer, but its one of those things that’s necessary to come back, so I’m happy to oblige to get back in person,” said 12th grade student, Eli Campbell.
To prevent the spread of COVID Ashland Independent Schools will implement social distancing,
encourage regular handwashing and sanitizing, disinfect their schools, and have temperature checks.
“We want kids in seats and research is very clear that the best way to reach students is when they are in the classroom physically, said Ashland Independent Schools Superintendent, Sean Howard. “I think people are ready for some form of normalcy.”
Despite the masks teachers and students say they are just happy to be back in the classroom doing hands-on learning rather than a virtual experience.
“I was virtual for most of last year and then I came back, and once I came back I saw my grades skyrocket,” said Campbell. “I saw my morale skyrocket. It’s just a better experience altogether.”
Ashland Independent Schools are not providing an option for virtual learning, but the district said they are prepared to make the switch if needed.