Two Skagit County school districts are making plans to have students in classrooms more often.
The Anacortes School District announced Friday it hopes to have all of its students back on campuses four days a week beginning May 6, while the Burlington-Edison district will have its K-6 students return to campuses four days a week starting May 3.
“Our staff has been working diligently every day to plan for this next step in our 6-phase approach to reopening,” the Anacortes district said in a news release. “We are still working through logistics like bus schedules, lunch schedules and locations, and staffing.”
Due to a variety of logistical challenges, the Burlington-Edison district will have its older students remain in the current hybrid fashion, a release from the district states.
“I recognize that another change — in a year that has already seen so many changes — may be difficult,” Superintendent Laurel Browning said in the release. “However, increased in-person learning will better support students’ social emotional well-being and academic development.”
On Monday, the Sedro-Woolley School District had all of its K-12 students in classrooms five days a week.
“Having full-time school would give us every opportunity to (finish strong),” Sedro-Woolley School District Superintendent Phil Brockman said.
“We believe we could do it safely and our board had that desire to do that. We’re getting a lot of community support around moving to full time school.”
Should COVID-19 case numbers continue to rise, however, the Sedro-Woolley district may have to pull back on having students on campus full time, he said.
Gov. Jay Inslee had set a deadline of Monday for all schools to provide some sort of in-person learning to all of their students.
While approaches to returning to in-person learning vary, all of Skagit County’s seven public school districts are in compliance with Inslee’s mandate.
The changes come while the county seems to be facing a fourth wave of increasing infection rates.
Still, Skagit County Health Officer Howard Leibrand said he feels that as long as schools comply with safety measures such as social distancing and the wearing of masks, schools are safe places.
“I think kids are safer in school than out of school,” he said.
— Reporter Brandon Stone contributed to this report.