By Tori Mason

DENVER (CBS4) – Denver Public Schools is hopeful that middle and high schools will soon be able to operate in a way that will feel much closer to what students and families are used to. DPS Board of Education says it plans to have fewer restrictions when students return from spring break.

(credit: CBS)

“Our elementary students have now been in person for nearly two months and our secondary students have been in person through a hybrid mode for over a month. While we continue to face challenges, we are currently seeing less anxiety and disruption than we were certainly seeing earlier in the year,” said Dwight Jones, interim superintendent for DPS.

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DPS is celebrating getting the first round of vaccines to all DPS employees. This means the district is on track to having everyone vaccinated when they return from spring break. DPS says once staff members are fully vaccinated, and two weeks have passed since their second dose, there is no longer a need for them to quarantine.

“We want to make sure that we do continue to mitigate disruption for learning for our students,” said Jones.

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Now that Denver is in Level Yellow on the state’s COVID-19 dial, DPS says they plan to restart extracurricular and enrichment activities. DPS says this will include after-school activities, arts, science, chess and debate. These activities will take place outdoors as much as possible. DPS says they can move indoors to take advantage of proper equipment and in the event of inclement weather.

(credit: CBS)

DPS says cohorts are no longer needed in the same manner as they were earlier in the pandemic. The district is planning on removing the limits on how many students and teachers can interact in all grades. DPS also intends to remove the 17-person class size cap for secondary grades.

Even though students are getting closer to their pre-pandemic normal, the board says it will take time before this new way of life becomes a thing of the past. Health practices like physical distancing and masks must continue to be followed.

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DPS is aiming for these changes to take place when students return from spring break. They’ll continue to keep the community informed in terms of what to expect.

Tori Mason