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Survey: Large Number Of Pinellas Students Want To Go Back To School

adult in gray button up shirt and mask escorts young girl in backpack and mask to front of a school.
Pinellas County Schools Facebook
Right now, about 60 percent of students in Pinellas County are attending school in-person.

Thousands of parents have told the Pinellas County school district that they want their children to return to campus after starting the school year online.

The results of a survey reveal that about 13,000 students want to go back to in-person learning.

Another 1,000 students want to go from physical school to virtual learning.

Right now, about 60 percent of students in Pinellas County are attending school in-person. That number would increase to 70 percent if those students follow through with their plan to switch learning options - and if their choice is approved.

Pinellas Schools Superintendent Michael Grego said the school district can accommodate the influx of students.

"We do have the space. The biggest challenge will be scheduling,” he said.

Dr. Allison Messina of Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital, one of the medical professionals advising the school district on how to mitigate the spread of Covid-19, said safety is going to be impacted by the broader community.

"As long as we can keep those community rates low with everyone playing their part, I think that will be a big part of keeping our schools even safer,” she said.

The school district plans to continue with its safety protocols, including keeping students socially distanced and requiring masks.

The second quarter of school starts in Pinellas County on Oct. 27.

Parents will learn next week if their school choice request has been accepted.

As of Monday, just over 200 students and staff in Pinellas County have tested positive for the coronavirus since classes started in August.

The district enrolls about 100,000 students.

As a reporter, my goal is to tell a story that moves you in some way. To me, the best way to do that begins with listening. Talking to people about their lives and the issues they care about is my favorite part of the job.
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