East Lansing administrators ‘excited like a puppy’ over students return tomorrow

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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — It’s been 353 days since East Lansing High School students roamed the halls of the building they call home.

That changes tomorrow, when the school welcomes back freshmen as a part of a soft re-open. Sophomores get their own day Wednesday, juniors on Thursday and seniors on Friday, with the full group of students returning next Tuesday.

Masks are required, hand sanitizer is all over the building, social distancing will be implemented in class rooms and one-way traffic direction signs line the hallways.

Those are all of the precautions in place to get the students back.

“We want to make sure everyone in this building is completely safe,” said East Lansing High School Princpal Andrew Wells. “We’ve had a number of meetings over the weeks or so…voices have been heard and put structure in place that we believe will provide the best situation for all of us at East Lansing High School.”

And the school district believed “the best situation for all” would be offering students and families the choice of how to handle it.

“Students, parents, families were able to choose if they want to come in person or be online,” said Allison Denisco, a math teacher at East Lansing. “We believe we could offer a solid education either way.”

The school anticipates half of the students to return — somewhere around 550 of their 1,199 enrolled students.

Denisco spent much of her Monday setting up her classroom for socially distanced learning. Her daughter was with her, in the corner of the classroom, going to school on her ipad. It was just a small glimpse into the life of teachers as we close in on the one-year mark of the pandemic.

“I am very excited, I keep telling my students I’m excited like a puppy dog to have the kids back in the classroom,” Denisco said. “It’s been a very long time.”

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