INDIANAPOLIS — Some IPS students will return to the classroom Monday for the first time since the pandemic hit last school year up until to this point students have been learning virtually.
"I think it will be good for them both mentally and academically to get back into the classroom to have that structure,” Christina Smith said.
Smith is a parent of IPS students who is getting her scholars ready for a first day like no other.
"We are really excited for kids to be back in the classroom,” Smith said.
It won't be the first day of school for Indianapolis Public Schools, but it is the first day back in the classroom for Pre-K through third grade. Grades 4-12 will return next week.
"I think we all know, and especially teachers know, that students tend to learn better in the classroom,” Smith said.
For Smith it is about getting back to a sense of normalcy.
"They are excited to go back in the classroom and see their teachers and see friends," Smith said. "They are excited to even go back and see the kids they don't necessarily get along with. They are just excited to go back and see everybody,” Smith said.
Though Smith is ready for Monday and all that brings, she's glad IPS didn't rush to bring students back to the classroom too soon.
“I think the district has done a good job in following the science,” Smith said.
She's also glad the district isn't forcing families with unique situations to return to the classroom if continuing distance learning is a better fit for them.
"I appreciate that the district didn't just say, 'Nope we are just all going to go back, and this is how it will be,'" Smith said.
Students will be given masks and they will be expected to wear them throughout the school day.