CRLS Students Welcomed Back to Classroom for in-Person Learning

Ella Lehrich, Contributing Writer

For the first time in fourteen months, CRLS will be open to all students for five days a week. After many long months of sitting in bedrooms staring at computers all day, this is going to be a very drastic change for all involved. There are students who have never been in their school buildings before, and teachers who are going to be welcomed with a time capsule of a classroom.

Back in March, Cambridge decided to open the high school for half of the day, four days a week, for students grouped into cohorts. This meant that students would go in every other week, though at the time only around a third of the student body chose to attend in-person learning at the high school. However, now being full-time and with less strict rules, a lot more students have decided to start in-person classes on May 10th. The rules about how spread out the students have to be and how many students can be in a classroom have been changed, allowing school to feel more normal than it did previously.. 

One of the main reasons that CRLS chose to open up more fully is because the Governor of Massachusetts, Charlie Baker, released a statement saying that the school had to. In a press release, he said, “The time to get kids back to school is now, it has become increasingly clear this virus is going to be with us for a while. We need to continue to work hard to get as many students back to school as possible.” He requested that every student have the option to go back to full time in-person school, and any school system that does not follow this could potentially lose money from the state. The expansion of in-person learning on May 10th brings drastic changes to the CRLS community, but also hopefully a rejuvenated desire to learn in a new environment for many students.

The expansion of in-person learning on May 10th brings drastic changes to the CRLS community, but also hopefully a rejuvenated desire to learn in a new environment for many students.”

Now that more students will be in the building, several changes to usual class conduct are necessary. The classes that will have all their students in-person will be run differently than those that have a mix. An example of an all-in-person class is Mr. Timothy Ogino’s 9th and 10th grade math class. He told the Register Forum, “We will not log into Zoom at all and try to work fully in-person and only use technology when it adds to the learning.” The first part of this class for these students won’t be making sure that they are muted or that their sound is working, rather, they will get to pull out notebooks and work on the questions up on the board. The feeling of being able to see all of the students and teachers, and being able to sit at a class desk is likely going to be a very strange experience for Mr. Ogino’s students. 

For classes with some students in-person and the rest at home, they are not going to be able to fully stop using Zoom. Mr. Andrew Kreuser teaches 9th grade English, which is one of these classes, and he said to the Register Forum, “We will continue to follow a similar general structure, and as more students are enrolled in person, we will make some adjustments to help support student collaboration.” The most important thing for many teachers, including Mr. Kreuser, is making sure that the students are able to learn to the best of their abilities. When the students are split up, it is important that a balance is found.