1 year later: KCK Public Schools teacher ready to welcome back students in-person

Jacinda West
Posted at 9:43 PM, Mar 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-24 23:50:20-04

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Several Kansas City area schools have been welcoming back all students to the classroom, and soon Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools will do the same.

The district will reopen classrooms one week from Wednesday.

Jacinda West, a KCKPS special education teacher, first spoke with 41 Action News one year ago, when virtual learning plans were just getting developed.

Soon after, West picked up supplies from her classroom and nowadays she and her students are in the groove of online learning.

"We were all set in a scramble, but I didn't want my students to feel as if, you know, I was taken back, I wanted them to feel calm," West said.

West and her colleagues are now preparing to welcome back students to in-person learning

"We're going to set this precedent, let them feel welcomed and we're going to let these kids that have been in the building before that, 'Hey, we're still where we were before. And we're going to be ready for next year,'" West said.

At home, her stepchildren who are in the Shawnee Mission School District have chosen to stick to virtual learning for the rest of the academic year. But it's not the way Andrew Field thought he'd spend his freshman year at Shawnee Mission West.

"It's just been tons of just getting used to and now it just feels like just second nature," Field said.

His younger brother, Alex, said he hopes he can go back to the classroom in the fall.

"Well, I really want to. I haven't seen my actual class in-person ever yet," Alex said.

It's a decision West will revisit with her family in a few months.

In the short term for her students, "any hiccups that come – the same as in the beginning – we're going to be here to support them and where their kids are always going to come first."

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