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Pandemic forces back-and-forth between in-person and virtual learning in Monroe

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MONROE (WKOW) -- With the weather getting colder and the holiday season fast approaching, the School District of Monroe growing increasingly concerned about skyrocketing case numbers.

"Ten days ago, we had a grand total of 24 individuals either COVID positive or in quarantine," said district administrator Rick Waski. "And at this time, it's 112."

Monroe is shifting to virtual learning starting next week, and it will stay virtual for two weeks -- something the district has done a few times already this year.

"Our elementary schools have gone to virtual once this year, and our middle school and high school, twice and three times, respectively," Waski said.

Some districts, like Richland Area Schools, are opting to just stay virtual until January to avoid all the back-and-forth.

But Waski says a survey from the last few weeks showed Monroe parents and staff preferred to take it two weeks at a time.

"If I would have got the survey numbers back from our community that would have asked for longer determinations of time, we would have explored that," Waski said.

Amanda Hirsch has three kids in the district -- in 7th grade, 3rd grade and kindergarten.

Hirsch says she doesn't mind two weeks at a time. She says her kids are bright, and the teachers work hard -- and since she can work from home, it's the best way to stay safe and hang on to hope.

"I'm sure that's a really hard decision to have to work out daycare and that situation," she said. "We're not in that, so I don't mind the two weeks. It gives the kids a little hope that maybe they'll go back."

Andrew Merica

Reporter/Producer, 27 News

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