In-person learning back in session for Green Dot Schools

Updated: Feb. 5, 2021 at 4:29 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - In-person learning is back in session for some Green Dot Schools students, but it’s far from business as usual.

“This year has absolutely prepared me for anything that I can ever imagine,” said Teddrick Estes, Hillcrest High School’s principal.

Hillcrest High School is one of Green Dot’s five public charter schools in Memphis.

A few weeks ago, school leaders opened for optional in-person learning.

More: SCS officials want teachers & staff vaccinated if schools are to reopen

So far about 1/3 of students decided to come back to campus.

“Our biggest issue is the focus on kids. It didn’t take us long to realize that the virtual learning platform is not a platform that is designed for our students to be successful,” Estes said.

Estes said some students struggled with internet access and environments that were not conducive to learning.

“The big goal is to provide them with space where they can be successful in school because we’re in high school right now, so they’re earning credits toward graduation and so every credit missed is another credit they have to make up to get to graduation,” he said.

So far, about 30 students have returned to Hillcrest, and they’re taking all the precautions necessary.

That includes social distancing, constant hand washing, a designated distance marker from students and their teachers and frequent disinfecting.

More: SCS gives insight into district’s return to in-person learning plans

Estes said the pandemic has created a learning curve for everyone, but he’s happy knowing they’re doing what’s best for kids so they can succeed.

“If we can create a safe space for at least some of those kids to come in here and to get back on track, then let’s do it,” He said.

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