Educators Excited, Exhausted, as School Resumes in Person

Mission High School on 18th St.

Laura Wenus/San Francisco Public Press

Mission High School on 18th St.

School is back in session, with students and staff in classrooms. Some students have not returned to campus in more than a year. Distance learning and hybrid schedules were taking their toll on students, teachers and parents. Now, nearly everyone is back, though school looks a little different with pandemic precautions like universal indoor masking in place. School social worker Yajaira Cuapio and kindergarten teacher Cathy Sullivan shared their experiences with the return to classrooms with “Civic.” Both are excited to be back and said their students are as well, but worry that schools could shut down again. 

“That’s my biggest hope: That we do not go into the shutdown again, just because I’m seeing how important it is for our students to be back, and their excitement, and I’m seeing how important it is for our families and our communities.”

— Yajaira Cuapio

“We have a lot more information than we did at the beginning of the pandemic. I remember at the beginning of the pandemic, we were cleaning everything 100 times a day. And now we’re knowing that surface transmission of COVID is rare. We also know that outdoor transmission of COVID is rare. So we know more about how to stay safe.”

— Cathy Sullivan
Yajaira Cuapio and Cathy Sullivan. Courtesy photos.

A segment from our radio show and podcast, “Civic.” Listen at 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at 102.5 FM in San Francisco, or online at, and subscribe on Apple, Google, Spotify or Stitcher

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