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District hosts in-person school registration

T-R PHOTOS BY LANA BRADSTREAM — Marshalltown Community School District Director of Human Resources Nora Ryan helps a family navigate the in-person registration for the 2020-21 school year on Tuesday at the Miller Middle Scool.

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first in a series of stories regarding Marshalltown Community School District’s Return to Learn plan.)

More than 80 families registered their children for school at in-person registration at the Miller Middle School on Tuesday.

Nora Ryan, director of human resources for Marshalltown Community School District, is in charge of student registration and was at Miller to help guide families on the process.

“It has been going well,” she said. “People are saying the process has been smooth, there are no long waits. It is nicely organized — they get in and out.”

The district has applied safety precautions to keep everyone safe at registration during the COVID-19 pandemic. Masks are required. Only children that are being registered and their parents or guardians are allowed. The number of people in the room at one time is limited. Only one family can be at a table and a time and the tables are socially distanced. After a family is done registering, the table is sanitized. Hand sanitizer is available. If numerous show up at one time, people are asked to wait in their vehicles until a district staff member notifies them they can enter the building. When entering the building, people are escorted.“One lady said she was anxious to come in, but said it was better than she thought,” Ryan said. “That is refreshing feedback to hear. I thought there would be a little more pushback, but everyone has been respectful and courteous.”

The district hosted the in-person registration session to help people who had trouble navigating the process online, did not have the technology available or anxious about it or spoke different languages. Ryan was hoping to see more people register online, but on Monday, only 37 percent of families had done so.

“So, that is why we hold this — to help people who cannot do it on their own,” she said. “We are here to assist people one-on-one and we are happy to do that. We want to serve the families in ways that are best for them.”

The deadline to register children for the 2020-21 school year is Wednesday, Ryan said. However, that deadline is not firm, which is why additional in-person registrations will be held at Miller from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday and from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday.

“The earlier families let us know, the better we can plan courses, class sizes,” Ryan said.

Ryan was very proud of the commitment staff members had for registration this year.

“I have not had one complaint,” she said. “Everybody realizes family needs. They have a nice attitude and an understanding that we are here for the kids. I am grateful for their positive attitudes and cooperation.”

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Contact Lana Bradstream 641-753-6611 or lbradstream@timesrepublican.com.

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