Heralds of Hybrid

Interviews with a variety Dakota Staff


Alessandro Romero, Writer


The school board harecently decided to prepare for hybrid learning for high and middle school. Students are justified to be worried about what it will look like right before they return in just two weeks. Luckily, Dakota staff were willing to answer questions regarding what hybrid will look like. Principal Koskos, Student Assistant Specialist Ms. Lange, and English teacher Mr. Bilof have all answered several questions in interviews that explains hybrid schooling 

Here are the questions given to and answered by Principal Koskos about the general hybrid experience in school buildings: 

Question 1: What will these precautions look like for students?   

Koskos: “The precautions to protect against the spread of COVID-19 will make school look and feel quite a bit different when students return.  From traffic restrictions in the hallway to every-other-seat seating at lunch and sanitizing desks between classes, it will be different.  We will be counting on students to do their part, though, because our success in being able to stay in school rides on it.  Students will play a huge role in determining how well things go. 

Question 2: Do you expect many errors made in following the procedures? 

Koskos: “We expect that adjustments will need to be made once we see our plans in motion.  There are a lot of moving parts.  We feel we have sound plans across the board, but you never really know how strong your plan is until it’s tested.  Will students make mistakes?  Sure – everyone’s human.  However, we’re going to try to take a coaching’ approach to working with our students to adapt to their new school reality.  We really hope to have to use disciplinary measures to change behavior only as a last resort.” 

Question 3: If there are mistakes made, especially an infection, how will they be handled?   

Koskos: “The District has prescribed procedures and protocols to handle situations where a student or staff member gets infected or is determined to be a “close contact” of someone who has tested positive for the virus.  If such a scenario were to play out, we’d be working closely with our District’s central administration and our district nurse to determine the appropriate course of action to keep everyone safe. 

Principle Koskos has showed how hybrid is going to look. The school will be adjusted by separating its spaces by half capacity while students maintain distance from one another. Dakota will take its time teaching students the guidelines they must follow. Teaching methods for guidelines will be like coaches’ teaching methods, but disciplinary actions are also a method that can be usedIn failure to maintain an outbreak, Dakota will get support from the District central administration and nurses. It is also important for students to play their part in guidelines. Overall, the school experience during hybrid is very cautious with staff and students taking an active role.  

Student Assistant Specialist Ms. Lange answers her given questions about the social and mental facets of hybrid: 

Question 1: Due to procedures limiting student interaction, how can students safely interact with their peers in the buildings?   

Lange: “It will be important for students to take proper mask wearing seriously at all times.  If we limit close contact and follow CDC guidelines, we should be able to still socialize and interact while still limiting risk. It will also be very important to wash hands regularly and take advantage of the “lanes” that have been made in the hallways.  Additionally having (self-chosen) assigned seats at lunch will help to allow us to enjoy our friends while also being able to contract trace if needed.”  

Question 2: What ways can student contact staff during school with protocols?  

Lange: The same ways we always have:  email, phone, Remind, Schoology, or in person while at school. 

Question 3: What kind of difficulties will students have while trying to maintain social interaction in school? 

Lange: It will be very exciting to see each other and many will be tempted to hug or to mistake our familiarity with our friends for safety but that is a mistake we do not want to make.  If we do not take the guidelines seriously and people begin to get sick, then we may have to revert to remote learning again this year.”  

Question 4: If there are, can these difficulties be remedied? 

Lange: “The best way to overcome these difficulties is to begin with the end in mind and make it a win-win for everyone by following the guidelines and washing our hands and wearing our masks and keeping a good distance from each other.” 

Ms. Lange displays the social functions of Dakota’s hybrid schooling. It will be limiting for students to interact with their friends. However, by keeping a distance away and following guidelines from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), students can engage in some socializationStudents can contact staff through the safety of online resources. Students want to engage with each other through physical, close-contact actions. Yet, this can lead to an infection. It is important for students to think of achieving the goal of going back to regular schoolThus, socializing will still commence among students, but it is important to still follow guidelines and put the goal of the school’s precautions in mind to achieve few infections 


Finally, Mr. Bilof explains the classroom experience during hybrid:  

Question 1: Although it is uncertain, what is your image for following in-classroom procedures?   

Bilof: “When it comes to following in-class procedures, I am confident students will be able to help follow protocols; this is truly going to require a community effort to protect each other.” 

Question 2: How can this limit or alter schooling for you?   

Bilof: “Right now, I feel that there will be less instructional time, though I’m confident that, with practice and more familiarity with the hybrid routine, we can better maximize our opportunities. 

Question 3: Will there be challenges that students have to face while also following in person guidelines?   

Bilof: “Students simply have to do their part; this entire experience is going to require adjustment, and students will have to recognize that we all have a duty to each other to ensure that we’re safe. Students are going to have to adjust to life in high school! For ninth graders, it’s going to be like starting the first day of high school, and for tenth graders, it will be their first time in the main building. All of the concerns that go into those first few days are going to be fresh, in addition to everything else!”  

Mr. Bilof helps portray what students’ experience will be like at the classroomThere is going to be a variety of rules in each classroom, but they all share the need of student effort. The classroom is going to be limited in some ways to be in line with quarantineClass instructional time is going to be crunched, but teachers are trying to optimize time. The challenge the students shall face is to do their part in maintaining protocols. The entire school will also face challenges in doing so. Everyone will have to adjust to these new protocols, which is going to be evident soon 

School is bound to be different during hybrid. From the general hallways, to the classroom, and to social lives, there will certainly be great change. The school will be separated to subsidize the recovery of the pandemicThere is aeffort to make the school safe, cautious, and prepared. However, it is also the students’ responsibility to maintain their safety and to follow the guidelines.