In slightly more than a month, the Everett Public Schools are likely to reopen.
What shape and form that opening will take remains a work in progress.
Events connected with the rising spread of the Coronavirus throughout the nation are destined to have some kind of palpable impact on the reopening.
Science and safety, above all, are the two most important guideposts being followed by Superintendent Priya Tahiliani and the administrators and teachers employed by the EPS.
Right now, it appears that the reopening will take the form of in person classroom instruction as well as remote learning in private homes on the Internet.
It may be one or the other at the start but the likeliest outcome after everything gets underway is for classroom instruction to take the lead.
However, this depends on what parents wish to do.
Many parents will want to protect their children in the EPS from contracting the virus by keeping them home.
It isn’t just about contracting the virus. It is about spreading it as well – taking it home from school or bringing it there in the first place, and then returning home and spreading it at home and throughout the community.
The EPS must provide adequate remote instruction as part of the EPS mandate to educate the children of this city for those who desire it.
For those who choose to go back to in classroom education, there is an entirely new regimen to be followed.
Social distancing, six foot spaces between desks, rules and regulations to protect the students and cafeteria workers, students and bus drivers, students and teachers and on and on are now being implemented.
In many, many ways this is a conundrum that takes time, effort and intelligence to carry off successfully.
Everything ultimately depends on the spread of the virus.
If there is a large spike in virus infections in the state, this will impact the reopening.
An uptick has the power to revert the reopening to an entirely remote teaching situation.
Right now, we appear safe in Massachusetts although cases have been rising, and deaths have not stopped.
Let’s keep our fingers crossed.