Back to School ~ COVID Style

“I know a lot of us dreaded it and we would’ve rather stayed in summer, but the start of the 2020-2021 school year came anyway.”  For some students like senior Alexis Acosta, that meant something very different.  She chose to be a remote-learner that logs on from home to participate in her classes.   About 20% of students elected to stay home this year due to COVID 19, which means that 80% returned to a vastly different atmosphere in their beloved Virginia High School.

This year, students were greeted with designated up and down stairwells, tape along the floor in the hallways, face masks, closed lockers, block scheduling, lunch in the classrooms and ZOOM calls.  Even with all the changes, there is some fun too.  There are tons of different face masks and every one of them is unique. Even though it may be uncomfortable, we can still have fun and show off our creativity or make something that screams you

One of the best new things this year is that students are often able to work outside the school. This is called a “mask break,” but it also allows us to get some outdoor time while completing our assignments. Mr. Hammer speaks on the subject, “I try to take my classes outside as much as possible during in-class work time. The masks weren’t the easiest to wear all day at first, but I think we’re all getting as used to them even though getting acne from them is no fun.” 

If you are in school or online, a teacher or a bystanding parent, you probably noticed that the time schedule has changed — a lot! Students now have four classes a day that are 89 minutes long. This helps reduce the mixing of students throughout the day and also helps students focus on specific subjects if they are a distance learner and should help them stay focused during the hybrid model too.  One sophomore noted, “I like that we learn the information and get to practice it right in the classroom instead of rushing to the next subject.  Sometimes, I used to forget what exactly I was supposed to do because we had seven classes of homework.  I like the four a lot better.”

This school year may come with some challenges, but it gives us the opportunity to make the best of it by being creative while also following rules.  All in all, it really teaches us that we can handle the challenges life throws at us.  If we can do this, we can do nearly anything.  
Written By:  Senior, Alexis Acosta and an Anonymous VHS Staff Member

District Office

411 South 5th Avenue
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

Eveleth-Gilbert Elementary

1409 Industrial Parkway
Eveleth, Minnesota 55734

Eveleth-Gilbert Junior High

1 Summit Street North
Gilbert, Minnesota 55741

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Eveleth-Gilbert Senior High

801 Jones Street
Eveleth, Minnesota 55734

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Franklin Elementary School

402 Elba Avenue
Eveleth, Minnesota 55734

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Nelle Shean Elementary

1 Summit Street North
Gilbert, Minnesota 55741

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Parkview Learning Center

506 North 9th Avenue West
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

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Rock Ridge High School

1403 Progress Parkway
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

Roosevelt Elementary

411 South 5th Avenue
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

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Virginia Elementary

411 South 5th Avenue
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

Virginia Secondary School

411 North 5th Avenue West
Virginia, Minnesota 55792

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Rock Ridge Public Schools Since 2020

Rock Ridge Public Schools combines the communities of Eveleth, Gilbert, and Virginia into a progressive school district embracing an academy style high school to provide students with a real world learning environment.

District Office

411 South 5th Ave
Virginia, MN 55792

V: 218-749-5437 | EG: 218-744-2211
info@rrps.org