DOWNEY, Calif. (KABC) -- It's been more than a year since the Downey Unified School District closed its schools because of the pandemic.
On Monday, the district re-opened all of its 20 campuses for a hybrid in-person learning model.
"I feel like I just won the lottery. It is such an amazing day," said Sylvia Estrella, principal at Gaulden Elementary School. "We've been waiting for this day and it is nice to have kids back on campus."
Downey Unified welcomed back over 10,000 students ranging from TK to 12th grade. District officials also said the hybrid learning model is optional.
According to district officials, students have been split up into different groups and will rotate for in-person learning throughout the week.
"My boys, there was no sleep last night, really excited," said Heather Curcio, who is a parent of two students at Gauldin and a 4th-grade teacher at the school. "They were just ready to be back in school, have a little bit of routine and normalcy again. It was a great day."
According to district officials, they have added all of the necessary PPE at each school to ensure it's safe for everyone. They also have parents fill out a daily COVID-screening questionnaire.
Principal Estrella said all of her students passed the screening.
"We are very well prepared. The students have individual desks that are spread out and spaced," said Curcio. "I feel very confident and comfortable with my students being back at school."
According to officials, the school district expects to use the current hybrid model through the end of the school year.
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Downey Unified reopens all schools for optional hybrid in-person learning
District officials said parents will fill out a daily COVID-19 screening questionnaire.
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