MT. VERNON, Ind. (WFIE) - Students in Mt. Vernon headed back to school Friday morning. A lot of changes were in place to keep them and the staff safe from COVID-19.
The first day of school excitement was still there for families as they headed into a new school year in a pandemic.
Parents were able to take pictures with masks on of their students, many not knowing what the school year will look like. But a lot of changes are in place behind those front doors.
“There’s going to be more plexiglass,” Dr. Matt Thompson, superintendent for the MSD of Mount Vernon said. “There’s going to be masks worn by the individuals in the building. You’re going to have hand sanitizing stations all over the place. Pretty typical to what you’re seeing in the rest of the world.”
The school district said Country Mark donated money to provide masks for students in need and SABIC helped make the classrooms safe for students this year.
“They actually donated all that plexiglass to us,” Dr. Thompson explained. “Lexan is their product. It’s been a huge help to us. We could not afford to put all that in on our own.”
The school district has released detailed plans for how this school year will go, and they have backup plans for those plans.
School officials tell us they are prepared for things to change quickly with heading back to classrooms during a pandemic.
If the school year goes virtual, lessons will be pre-recorded and posted, and paper packets will be given to students who might not have the best access to the internet.
They know this is a difficult time for students, and these changes can be hard to understand, that’s why the district is providing a counselor and psychologist for students from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily.
They will also be requiring face masks, just like all Indiana schools.
The school district also announced a donation from SABIC is going to help them out this year by providing five WiFi hotspots in areas of need should they have to go virtual.
The Metropolitan School District Mount Vernon isn’t the only school district heading back to class Friday. North Gibson is also having their first day back.
More schools will be returning to the classroom next week. On Monday, North Posey will head back, and on Tuesday, Perry Central will have their first day of classes.
Tons of students are heading back on Wednesday, including, Grayville, Greater Jasper, North Spencer, South Spencer, Pike and Warrick County Schools.
On Thursday of next week, East Gibson, South Gibson and Wabash will have their first day of classes.