Online learning is coming to an end for students and staff of Harbor Springs Public Schools.
HSPS Superintendent Michael Behrmann said in an email there will not be any virtual learning opportunities offered by any of the schools in the district for the 2021-2022 school year.
The district offered online and in-person classes through the 2020-2021 school year during the brunt of the pandemic. According to a graph on the district’s website, Harbor Springs Public Schools recorded a varying amount of positive cases since September of last year with a peak of 34 positive cases in April and a significant decrease to three positive cases in May.
To some Harbor Springs parents and students, the decline in cases isn’t enough to ease their worries.
Ally Warner, who’s son Cristyan and daughter Carrigan will be heading to 10th grade and eighth grade respectively, said she has concerns. Carrigan struggles with heart and lung disease, and Dysautonomia, a group of diseases that affects the nervous system. An in-person school year, even with declining cases, could put her at major risk.
“We planned for Cristyan to attend school next year anyway,” said Ally Warner. “Our bigger concern is Carrigan, her doctors have told us that she shouldn’t be doing in-person school, so it’s definitely going to be a challenge to get her through, we’re still not exactly sure what to do.”
With Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announcing that statewide COVID-19 restrictions would be lifted by June 22, 2021 and with Harbor Springs schools returning to in-person instruction, one student is excited for a return to normalcy.
Maye Burns, a rising senior at Harbor Springs High School, is one of those eager to get back.
“I finished through last year completely online, but I definitely felt like I was missing out,” said Maye. “I feel like with everyone being vaccinated I’m not as worried.”
According to its website, the district’s Ram Wellness Program will continue to offer rapid COVID testing for any students and staff who believe they’re experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.