In-person learning for some students at REACH Academy Charter School in Buffalo kicks-off an unprecedented school year


It’s uncharted territory, reopening school during a pandemic. At REACH Academy Charter School in Buffalo their journey started Monday.

It was the first day of school, and students, staff and faculty were amped-up!

“We are finally back! Yay!! We’re so excited,” said Lisa Rogers Dean of Scholars.

Like many area school schools, REACH Charter School, is starting the school year with a hybrid learning model.

Students in the school, who did not opt for the fully virtual learning plan will be going to in-person classes every day except for Wednesday.

On Wednesday, the students will take part in remote learning, the school will be cleaned, and teachers will have a planning day.

For the students who are in the full remote learning program at the school, there will be video cameras in the classrooms to stream the class to the students at home.

“So, we were able to spread out in our building enough, so that we have six feet between students, we’ve redesigned the space that we have so that we could have all of our scholars here at one time,” said Linda Marszalek, head of school and co-founder. “We truly believe that in order to reduce the achievement gap for kids that come from lower-income homes that we need to be able to have our kids here in school.”

In addition to social distancing in the classrooms, some of the other safety protocols in place to protect against COVID-19 include mandatory face masks, temperature checks taken on school buses, and students getting dropped by parents.

Another COVID-19 safety measure is a socially distant meal service. The older children will eat their meals in classrooms.

The younger children will be in the cafeteria with seats that are six feet a part.

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