Back to school: Archdiocese of Philadelphia unveils hybrid model for fall semester

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philadelphia Archdiocesan secondary/high schools are going forward with a hybrid model for the fall semester.

In the model for the high schools, there will be reduced class sizes using a hybrid A/B instruction plan that allows for half of the total number of students to be physically present each day.

Students will be split into two groups that report to class on different days.

"To allow for the recommended six feet distancing in classrooms, cafeteria spaces, and other locations, only half the students would attend school in person each day. On alternating days, students would participate in the same class live from home using a learning management system and classroom cameras," the Archdiocese said in its plan titled Catholic High Schools Compass: Continuing Excellence in Catholic Education.

They say students will be seated a full 6 feet apart, as recommended by the CDC, when in classrooms or seated in the cafeteria or other spaces in the school. Signage will be placed in hallways and stairwells reminding students of the distancing requirement.

"I'm a little nervous, but I'm excited to see my friends again," said Pope John Paul II High School incoming junior Theresa Cleary.

"I'm excited to meet new people and finally get to see people, since we've been living in our houses are a few months now," added freshman sister, Monica.

The plan says students and staff will be required to wear face coverings following the directives of the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

Students should screen themselves for symptoms and temperatures before leaving for school each day, the Archdiocese says.

For the Clearly sisters, like many, it'll be an adjustment that'll also keep their faith in.

"I'm going to be as cautious as possible, just to avoid any unnecessary contact, things like that, I'm nervous to some degree but I am excited to get back," Monica Cleary said.
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