PELL CITY, Ala. (WIAT) — Students are returning to the classroom in school districts across the state.
Students in Pell City Schools returned Wednesday to start a new school year and educators hope to return to a normal learning environment.

Masks are optional in the school district, and they have set new COVID procedures this year.

If a student or teacher tests positive for COVID, they’re asked to stay home for five days, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated. If someone is exposed to a person with covid, they are allowed to be at school if they have no symptoms, only if they’re vaccinated.

If they’re unvaccinated, there asked to stay home for five days and can only return if there are no symptoms.

A survey done by the National Education Association showed that 55% of educators have thought about leaving the profession because of challenges brought forth from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two educators told CBS 42 they were here to stay and believe things will get back on track this year.

“I’m excited about getting to know the kids because we have been off all summer, and their parents can come in and volunteer, and we can get to know them better,” said Eden Elementary kindergarten teacher Shelly Harmon.

“I think what we’re looking forward to the most is seeing all of their little smiles not wearing a mask, and it be much more laid back, and it’s just genuine, and it’s not the COVID craziness,” Walter M. Kennedy third grade teacher Krystal Mitchell said.

Pell City Schools are also taking all measures to ensure students and faculty’s safety.