Fairfield schools returning to in-person classes

FAIRFIELD — Fairfield Community School District plans to return to in-person classes on Monday, Feb. 1.

Superintendent Laurie Noll said the district’s low number of COVID-related absences and the falling positive test rate during the past two weeks will allow the district to return to a “normal” schedule.

The plan is for students in all grades to be in class every weekday except Wednesday, which will be an online-only day. Noll said teachers need the day to focus on those students who are doing fully online classes.

Last week, the district reported no COVID cases for the first time since Sept. 30.

“It was so exciting to report zero COVID cases,” Noll said. “It shows that we have good mitigation, and our custodial staff and employees working so hard.”

Fairfield schools have not been fully in-person at any point this year, at least not for all grades. The elementary schools were in-person for October and part of November, and the middle school was in-person for a week before the district had to abruptly change course and go to fully online learning in mid-November. The high school has never been fully in-person.

Noll spoke about discussions the district has had about conducting classes on snow days, like Monday and Tuesday when the district canceled classes. Though the district is set up for online learning, Noll said switching to virtually courses on a snow day is not so simple. For starters, some teachers have inadequate internet at their homes, and have to come to the school building to lead their classes. Some have to rely on Wi-Fi in restaurant parking lots.