DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Montgomery Preparatory Academy is one of a handful of schools that resumed classes on Monday. Some students returned equipped with masks and social distancing practices, while others are completing courses from home. Principal of the School, Emory Wyckoff, said the mood on the first day of school was calm, adding students and parents adjusted well to new changes meant to keep the kids safe.

“Me as the principal, I was monitoring the process, the traffic flow, answering parents’ questions. So yesterday really, really felt good, so much that we received calls today from parents wanting to change the virtual learning model to the traditional.”

Wyckoff said the reason for the smooth transition was the comfort parents and students felt by choosing the learning model most appropriate for them. The school offered families the option to send their children back into the school building, resume the school year with virtual learning, or enroll in a hybrid option. While online learners will reduce their risk of exposure by staying home, Wyckoff said precautions are being taken in the school building to ensure the health of students and staff.

“We have contracted with LACOSTA Cleaning Services and we have staff members that are doing a cleaning schedule that is being monitored by the school principal, myself. We also have provided each classroom with sanitation stations and materials so that students and teachers are practicing cleaning habits so that they can actually help support the fight of an outbreak happening at Montgomery Prep.”

Wyckoff said taking these precautionary measures is important, because if one student or staff member gets sick, the school will likely have to close, in alignment with CDC guidelines. But he said he’s hoping preventative measures will keep that from happening, since many students truly missed their pre-coronavirus routine.

“As they entered the building, they were very excited about meeting their teachers face-to-face. For our hybrid students, that began today. Again, same types of responses. Again, we are practicing social distancing and following the guidelines of the CDC and it seems as if our parents have done an excellent job in educating the students regarding being safe while at school.”

Second and third grade traditional teacher at the school, Sherry Fizgerald, added, with all the uncertainty the coronavirus outbreak has caused, she is striving to provide an educational environment where students can feel safe and free from stressors caused by the pandemic.

“Our goal for this year is to keep life as normal as possible for the students. We want to be able to get them into the classroom or online and give them the best education that they can get. We’re trying to keep them safe, following guidelines and procedures.”

Principal Wyckoff said all the students at the school are adjusting to wearing masks and practicing social distancing, but if someone does get sick, he said, staff is prepared to take the necessary steps to keep everyone else in the building safe. For more information on the school’s protocols, click here.