STUDENTS at the Bendigo Special Developmental School have eagerly returned to face-to-face classes.
All students were back on Tuesday as the state government chose to reopen special schools in full.
"It has been lovely," principal Kirshy McAinch said. "We obviously did a lot of preparation to transition back.
"We have been speaking with families and students so they would understand what would be the same and what would be different.
"As you would expect, we've had the whole gamut of responses. We've had a few students that haven't been getting out of bed quite early enough - we've had a few late arrivals.
"But on the whole, the attendance has been really great. We had a line out the front door on the first day."
Ms McAinch said the school - which supports about 130 students who have moderate to severe intellectual disabilities - had implemented additional cleaning measures to keep everyone safe.
"We have a small number of students whose parents are choosing to keep them at home because they are at a greater risk," she said.
"They have some medical advice to that effect. We will continue remote learning for them.
"But we have had a lot of conversations with families. There was a level of anxiety, but that was eased when I talked through our processes, particularly around cleaning.
"We have a pretty much zero tolerance approach to a runny nose or a cough - anyone with symptoms is sent home.
"That has made families feel confident that we recognise the seriousness of the situation we're in. We're certainly taking every precaution we can to keep people safe."
Ms McAinch said while the students had transitioned back to face-to-face classes, the school would continue to use elements of remote learning.
"We often use the rotation structure in our classrooms, where some students will have individual tasks while the teacher works with an individual student or a small group," she said.
"Students now have those remote learning skills. It means the skill can be taught by the teacher and then the student can practise the skill by themselves on their computers or iPads."
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