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Students weigh in on Knox County Schools' reopening plan

Their parents may make the decisions about the upcoming school year, but the kids have thoughts about what's coming, too.

KNOX COUNTY, Tenn. — Knox County families have a week to decide if they'll send their students back to school in person, or opt for virtual learning.

Parents may make the final call, but the kids have something to say about it.

"I'm gonna go to school in person," said Central High School freshman Anna Swart.

"I'd rather go to school in person," said Hardin Valley Middle School 6th grader Maddox Brown.

"I think I'm gonna go back to school," said Farragut Middle School 6th grader Lucas Howard.

RELATED: Getting you back to school: Virtual Learning vs. In-person Class Option

These student said they learn better in a classroom and miss seeing other people.

"I like that eye to eye kind of thing," said Maddox. "Like you're actually there learning the stuff."

"I kind of saw my parents' point with being one-on-one in person and seeing the benefits of that," said L&N STEM Academy senior Ayanna Albright.

"I also miss my friends who I went to school with and I'm not really able to see them outside of school," said Anna.

RELATED: 'We are worried' | Teachers and parents weigh in on KCS Fall plan

They're ready to get back to learning in general.

"I'm just excited about learning something new," said Hardin Valley Elementary School kindergartener Hudson Spradling.

"I"m just excited that we get to go back to school," said his sister, 3rd grader Hannah Spradling.

"I honestly miss like math and science," said Lucas. "Those are the only two. I hate all the other ones."

Some students, like Ayanna and the Spradlings, are still considering the virtual option.

"Just health reasons mainly," said Ayanna. "Second, just having a more flexible schedule for myself."

She said she and her family are taking the full week to decide, but are leaning toward going back in person.

RELATED: Coalition of educators, parents offers guidance on how Knox County should proceed with fall classes

Mom Lauren Spradling said she's between sending Hannah and Hudson back to school in person, or home schooling them through an outside program. She said she doesn't like how much screen time is planned for the Knox County virtual option.

But the kids know each family has to make its own choice.

"It's really their decision," said Lucas. "It's whatever their kids think or want."

The students know to be ready for changes when they get to the classroom.

"I'm expecting not a lot of people in the classroom because I think plenty will chose to go virtual," said Ayanna.

"Everybody's gonna be wearing masks," said Anna. "The desks are gonna be a little farther apart and at lunch we're probably gonna have to sit like every other chair."

RELATED: Knox County Schools registration forms for computers to be available July 17, as part of 1:1 plan

Give the younger kids some credit, too. They know why everything is different.

"Because of coronavirus," said Hudson.

You can click this link to learn all the details Knox County released about their in-person and virtual school plans for the 2020-2021 school year.

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