Hundreds of students with the highest needs can return to their classrooms as four Boston schools reopen Monday.
Boston Public Schools and the Boston Teachers Union reached an agreement on ways to keep students and teachers safe with in-person learning Sunday night.
The four schools reopening Monday are the Carter School, Horace Mann School for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, McKinley Schools, and Henderson Inclusion School.
"This framework that reflects the common sense solutions advocated for by union educators will make the in-person learning experience safer and higher quality for our students with the greatest needs,” said Boston Teachers Union President Jessica Tang. “Our goal has always been to get our students the services they need as quickly as possible and are pleased that our highest needs students at these four schools are able to resume in person learning."
The agreement implements added provisions to prevent coronavirus from spreading within school buildings including additional personal protective equipment, improved ventilation systems such as portable air purifiers and additional coronavirus testing protocols.
Teachers at these schools will have access to free weekly tests.
"Due to the global pandemic, many of our students have gone too long without the critical in-person services that they require for their continued health and well-being,” Boston Superintendent Brenda Cassellius said. “I am thankful to the many hardworking teachers, school leaders and staff at these four schools, and all of our schools, who serve our children and families every day, especially during these very trying times.”
The Teachers Union characterized the protocols as some of the best protections statewide.
Earlier in the school year, only the highest need students had been participating in classroom learning despite objections from the union. Boston Public Schools went fully remote in October due to a spike in coronavirus cases in the city.