Seniors to return four days per week starting Monday

Seniors+Austin+McNuer+and+Natalie+Sherwood+learn+about+their+South+Carolina+senators+and+congressmen+in+Government+and+Economics+teacher+Rick+McCLoud%27s+3rd+period+class+Thursday%2C+Oct.+22.++They+will+attend+school+four+days+a+week%2C+along+with+the+rest+of+the+Senior+Class%2C+beginning+Monday%2C+Oct.+26.+

Kennedy Parker

Seniors Austin McNuer and Natalie Sherwood learn about their South Carolina senators and congressmen in Government and Economics teacher Rick McCLoud’s 3rd period class Thursday, Oct. 22. They will attend school four days a week, along with the rest of the Senior Class, beginning Monday, Oct. 26.

Liz Haigler, Staff Reporter

All  in-person seniors will return to LDHS Monday, Oct. 26 as the school phases students in for 4-day face-to-face instruction. Remote learning will continue on Wednesdays for all students. 

Principal Tina Faulkner said that the District’s decision to phase in the Senior Class before others was based on input from the LDHS Administrative Team.

“We began to talk about who might be the best to phase back in, so we decided that seniors would be since they are ready to graduate,” Faulkner said. “Some of them will be graduating in December; some will be graduating in June, and we could really get a handle on whether or not they still needed courses to take or what they needed to do to be ready to graduate.”

Faulkner added that seniors are the smallest class; therefore, they would be easier to add back into the school population, and they would not suddenly overload buses with more passengers since many seniors drive to school.

“The hope is that everybody comes back,” she said. The District has not announced a timeline for other grade levels to return, and Faulkner says that decisions about bringing students back to school are still dependent on COVID-19 data.

Some seniors are excited about the return to school.

 “I’m happy that we’re going back because I can’t learn online, and it gives me an opportunity to engage in my work,” senior Maurizio Morales said.

Underclassmen who long to be back in person feel sympathy for the seniors who will return next week.

“I’d like to be phased in, but I get that it is [their] senior year and not mine. I’m not mad about it,” junior Audrey Maddox said.

Still other students have health and safety concerns if LDHS abandons the hybrid schedule.

“I don’t want to. I feel like we’re gonna have to shut back down if we open back up,” senior Nick Hill said. 

Faulkner said that she and District leaders are aware that some students may have concerns about returning to face-to-face instruction.

“The District Office is very open to any concerns that we have and are willing to talk about it and bring it before the Board to see what we can do,” Faulkner said.

The current policy is that students who are supposed to be face-to-face but who are not in the classroom will be marked absent, but parents may send notes to the LDHS Attendance Office, and then the Attendance Office will change the absence. Parents should send notes to Attendance Clerks Tracy Addy (taddy@laurens55.org) or Carol Bedenbaugh (cbedenbaugh@laurens55.org) if students are not going to be in the building on their assigned days.