RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – CBS 17 was there as St. Timothy’s School in Raleigh waited to see if COVID-19 would force virtual learning and we followed them as teachers did eventually end up teaching from home.
Now after 7 months of in-person learning, there have been zero COVID-19 transmissions on campus.
It started with a panel of experts to figure out how to do it with 600 staff and students.
“People far smarter about these things than I am led by a pediatric virologist who’s a physician and scientist. So we said can we come back safely and if so what does that look like” said Head of School Tim Tinnesz.
Desks sit six-feet apart, everyone wears a mask, there are fewer kids per classroom, additional personnel, the gym, and the dining hall were converted into classrooms.
And a lot of time is spent outside.
“We did all that and with a lot of hard work we’ve really had a successful in-person experience this year,” said Tinnesz.
A negative COVID-19 test was required before each person could come back to school after Christmas and winter break.
“We could come back confident that at least in that moment in time, on this campus, even no matter what’s going on the community is coming back with a negative PCR test result,” said Tinnesz.
Standardized testing in December resulted in no decline.
“And they showed that our students looked no different than the standardized tests that were given in 2019 or 2018 or 2017. Which again just reaffirms the combination of, even in the midst of all of this. they are learning and they’re learning what they need to know.”
As for the restrictions and COVID-19-related rules both inside and outside Tinnesz says there’s been no pushback from students.
“Children, they find ways to have fun, to be joyful and they’re incredibly resilient more so than adults are oftentimes. So our kids are having a great year they’re learning they’re thriving.”