Happy teachers, temperature checks greet Harrisville students on first day of school

WWNY Happy teachers, temperature checks greet Harrisville students on first day of school

HARRISVILLE, N.Y. (WWNY) - In Lewis County, students have donned their masks and are at desks 6-feet apart. We visited Harrsiville Central School District, where educators are putting plans into practice.

Staff at Harrisville Central School District took temperatures at the door and Superintendent Robert Finster was outside greeting the kids.

“Didn’t sleep a wink last night. Couldn’t wait for the kids to come back. It’s been a long six months. A lot of frustration, but also a lot of happiness now that they’re back. And hopefully we can stay, and the flow goes well, and people stay healthy,” said Finster.

When school buses normally pull in, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see students streaming off them all at once.

But, not this year.

Students will have to be let off one bus at a time a new practice to promote social distancing.

Inside the doors, Finster says the bell schedule has been staggered to keep kids from packing the hallways.

“We tried to do a lot of things to make the congregation of kids the least we possibly can,” said Finster.

Classrooms are socially distanced, with desks 6-feet apart. Students can take their masks off when they’re sitting, but when they get up, they do have to put their masks back on.

Students say masks and social distancing might take time to get used to, but they understand why the guidelines are in place.

“Keep everyone safe so we can get back to normal,” said Brady Hall, senior

“Safety comes first and obviously we need to get back into school, but we need to be safe about it,” said Benjamin Taylor, senior.

English teacher Michelle Fuller says she’s excited to see students back and is ready to adapt as the school year rolls along.

“Things are going to come up that we haven’t prepared for - so just that kind of uncertainty and you just have to be very flexible and roll with the punches,” she said.

Finster says he trusts students will get past the growing pains that come with change.

“It’s a new norm that they’re going to have to get used to, but we have awesome kids here,” he said.

Finster says he’s thankful for the public health departments in Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties for helping with the school’s safety plan.

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