JUNCTION CITY, Ore. -- Territorial Elementary School held its first five-hour day of in-person learning since the pandemic began on Monday.
According to school administrators, nearly all of the school’s 78 students were present for in-person instruction.
Many students said they felt safe at the school and were excited to be learning in person again alongside their friends.
“I'm most looking forward to being in my classroom and eating lunch with everyone,” second grader Sahalie Bergeron said.
Students were separated into multiple groups to ensure that proper social distancing guidelines could be followed.
Some parents were relieved their children will now have more interaction with other children throughout the day.
Kristen Fries, a parent of two students, said remote learning was challenging logistically. She said she is relieved to see her children back in class.
“It's hard to have a 5-year-old sitting down normally at a screen for a lot of hours a day, so it's a nice change,” Fries said.
Territorial’s principal, Annette Sisler, said she worked with parents, teachers and staff members to come up with a reopening plan that everyone felt comfortable with.
“A school without children in it just doesn't feel right," she said.
Laurel Elementary and the 5th Grade Academy will have in-person instruction starting on Thursday.
According to the school district’s website, secondary schools could shift to a hybrid instruction model as early as Feb. 22.