Rogers Park school ready to open for in-person learning

While many schools are starting remotely, FOX 32 wanted to see what it takes for a school to open in-person.

Principal Ben Blair showed FOX 32 around Rogers Park Montessori School, which is now revamped for teaching during a pandemic.

“For every educator, this is their first year of teaching all over again,” Blair said.

At the toddler through 8th grade school on the North Side, about 60 middle school students will return first. They will find desks spaced 6-feet apart, Plexiglas dividers and very small classes.

“We've broken them down into smaller pods so there will be between 13 and 15 students in any one space, they won't be mixing together and the teachers wont' be mixing together across those spaces,” Blair said.

The school is tearing down some playground equipment and will put up tents in the parking lot so they can have lunch and learning outdoors as much as possible.

FOX 32’s Sally Schulze got a temperature check and health screening to enter the school, just like all students and staff will.

“We're not fooling ourselves. We know that there may be times through the school year that when the children have to stay at home, but we know that time together in-person is incredibly valuable,” Blair said.

The school is preparing packets for the 50 or so students who chose at-home learning. But most of the 320 students plan to be back in the classroom, masked and ready to learn.