The Duluth School District met for hours on Thursday to decide how to proceed with the upcoming school year.

After a long meeting between the school board, principals, and health officials the board voted 6-1 in favor of a hybrid model of both virtual and in-person learning to start the school year.

According to the district's hybrid plan, students will be divided into groups to limit the number of kids in any one school at a time. The district says that elementary students could attend in-person learning 2 days a week and participate in distance learning 3 days per week. Middle and high school students can attend in-person learning 1 day a week and do distance learning the other 4 days of the week.

The first nine days of the school year will feature "enhanced distance learning" students will participate in welcome activities with teachers and other students, and learn about all the new COVID-19 safety guidelines. Students, and parents, will be taught the various tools they'll be using for distance learning.

Parents can also choose to have students do 100% distance learning if they would rather their child stays out school buildings at this time. Parents will need to fill out a form for each child, the form should be posted by August 10th here. The form will help the district plan for the year.

“We encourage everyone in our Duluth community to work together to decrease COVID numbers so children have an opportunity to go to school in person, full time, as soon as possible. That's best for students educationally,” said Superintendent Magas.