DOE, teachers union agree on safety protocols for bringing more students back to campus

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Published: Mar. 15, 2021 at 5:09 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The state Department of Education has reached agreements with the Health Department and teachers union on how to bring more students back to campus.

More students will start returning to campuses next week after spring break.

The agreements involve both teaching and safety protocols. But many schools are struggling with how to separate students by 6 feet when they take off their masks, particularly to eat lunch.

Kanoelani Elementary School Principal Stacie Kunihisa said 100% of her students won’t be returning this school year because the cafeteria doesn’t have enough space to socially distance.

“Our cafeteria can maybe fit 70 students and if you divide 760 by 70,” she said.

“I would need 10 lunch periods for kids to eat safely.”

Other factors impacting school capacity include air circulation in classrooms, weather, overcrowding, and individual families preference for in person or distance learning.

This story will be updated.

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