Troy students, teachers excited for new school year, despite growing COVID concerns

TROY, Ohio — Troy City Schools returned to class Wednesday and school officials are hoping it feels more like a normal year for the first day of school.

Last year, Troy City Schools launched their own online academy that was made up entirely of Troy teachers. A year ago, there were 750 students who opted to be virtual. Now, 700 of them are back in the building for this year.

Supt. Chris Piper said, “The biggest challenge that presents is social distancing in the classrooms. We can’t guarantee six feet social distancing with all of our students, but we’re doing our best to create as much social distance as possible without disrupting school operations significantly.”

>> Back to School: Start dates, mask policies & virtual plans for local districts

Despite some of the challenges that Troy and many districts face coming back to school this year, Supt. Piper said it feels different than a year ago and much more what it was like before 2020.

“First day of school is always an exciting time. I’ve had the chance today to visit five our nine buildings. The students look very excited, the teachers looked very excited, so there’s a real excitement in the air to get back to school. I think everybody’s very anxious, especially when you’re transitioning buildings for students but everyone’s very excited to be back,” Supt. Piper said.

He continued by saying that they feel much more confident this year in their ability to adapt should they need to do so on the fly, especially going through last year. Supt. Piper added that coming up with a plan, he’s been in contact with other schools in Miami County.

“We’re great partners with Miami County Public Health, so we seek their advice on a routine basis along with other county schools. We touch base with other county schools in our area to see what best practice is and discuss that and kind of develop plans together so there’s a lot of comradery,” Supt. Piper said.

Right now, the district is still recommending masks, but not requiring them unless students are on the bus, which is a federal mandate.

James Rider

James Rider

I was born in Virginia and have moved several times in my life as a member of an Air Force family. I've lived in Virginia, California, Germany, England, and Ohio. I graduated from Centerville High School and then went on to attend Ball State University where I graduated with a bachelor's degree.