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Photos: Riverside Central prepares for distance learning

Students and teachers spent part of Thursday, Jan. 13, preparing for distance learning.

Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Emma Horn, left, a first-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, and Lida Casper, the Community Schools site facilitator at the school, wave to students in a different part of the classroom through a Google meeting while preparing for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
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ROCHESTER — Rochester Public Schools is moving from in-person learning to distance learning for two weeks —Jan. 18-28 — because a surge in COVID-19 cases has hundreds of students and staff members out sick, caring for someone who is sick or in quarantine.

Earlier this week, the district reported a school-year high 564 new positive COVID-19 cases between Jan. 3-9. So far this school year, there have been 1,960 positive cases.

Of the new cases, 183 were reported in pre-K through fifth-graders, 288 in grades 6-12, and 93 with staff members. The school district has about 17,800 students and 2,700 staff members.

Riverside Central Elementary School Principal Matt Ruzek said Thursday that teachers were doing everything they could to take care of students and make sure it still feels like school is happening the next two weeks.

"We're getting materials ready. We're getting equipment ready. We're setting up online things. We're connecting with families in regards to, at our school, basic needs," Ruzek said.

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The preparations were expected to continue Friday.

"We'll try and put those pieces in place today, and then we'll revisit it tomorrow," he said.

Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Lida Casper, the Community Schools site facilitator at Riverside Central Elementary School, and Jody Peterson, a reading support teacher who is substitute teaching in a different class, work on setting up a website used for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester. Rochester Public Schools announced on Wednesday they will temporarily move from in-person learning to distance learning on Jan. 18 through Jan. 28 due to a surge in COVID-19 cases affecting students and staff. "We've probably subbed more than we've taught reading this year," said Peterson referring to staffing issues.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Chelsie Dietrich, a fifth-grade teacher at Riverside Central Eleemntary School, helps students set their iPads up for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Yoeldris Martin Jr., a second-grader at Riverside Central Eelementary School, works on a math worksheet on an iPad in preparation for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Dawn Trap, an assistant principal at Riverside Central Elementary School, prepares distance learning packets for students who couldn't be in school Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Emma Horn, left, a first-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, and Lida Casper, the Community Schools site facilitator at the school, go over how to join a Google meeting with Horn's students while preparing for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Kris Guy, a second-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, helps Lejla Sabackic Anders with a math worksheet on an iPad while preparing for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Luke Ubinger, a second-grader at Riverside Central Elementary School, helps classmate Lejla Sabackic Anders get an iPad set up for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Kris Guy, a second-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, helps Yoeldris Martin Jr. set up an iPad for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Students in Chelsie Dietrich's fifth-grade class at Riverside Central Elementary School work on setting up their iPads for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Kris Guy, a second-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, helps Alice Lokken with a math worksheet on an iPad while preparing for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Chelsie Dietrich, a fifth-grade teacher at Riverside Central Eleemntary School, helps a student set their iPad up for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
Preparing for Distance Learning at Riverside Central Elementary
Kris Guy, a second-grade teacher at Riverside Central Elementary School, helps, from left, Moriah Molina, Alice Lokken and Sahroya Hegwood set up their iPads for distance learning Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, in Rochester.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin

Joe Ahlquist is the photo editor at the Post Bulletin. Joe is a 2013 graduate of Winona State University and previously worked at the Winona (Minn.) Daily News and the Sioux Falls (S.D.) Argus Leader before arriving at the Post Bulletin in July of 2017. Readers can reach Joe at 507-285-7624 or jahlquist@postbulletin.com.
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