By David Schuman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — People in Delano are sharing their opinions on what to do with the upcoming school year.

Many families recognize that whatever decision is made, something important will be sacrificed.

Keri Saxowsky wants her daughter, Fayte, to start eighth grade at Delano High School, despite the risks.

“I want everybody to remain safe too, and I know that may not be a possibility if everybody goes back to school,” Saxowsky said.

In Wright County, where Delano’s schools are located, COVID-19 case numbers align with a state recommendation of hybrid learning for middle and high school and in-person learning for elementary students.

“I would like to drill down to the data a little bit more before we make a final determination,” said Matt Schoen, the district superintendent. “That’s exactly what the Department of Education and Health is telling us to do.”

Gary Zitzloff, a grandfather of three elementary-aged girls, says it’s a tough situation either way.

He knows the girls will learn better from teachers than from him and his wife, but his family’s situation gives him pause.

“If [the kids] do get something and bring it here, we’re also caregivers for my mother-in-law who’s up in assisted living,” Zitzloff said.

Fayte worries about her social life too, under a hybrid learning model.

“I have no friends that have last names the same side of the alphabet as me and so I have to go to school alone,” she said.

The school board discussed the possibility of a public Q&A session before making a final decision on opening the school year, which will come by August 21.

David Schuman