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PERRY, Iowa (WHO) – The Perry School District is starting to reopen schools using a phased approach following the deadly mass shooting at Perry High School earlier this month

Perry Elementary School is set to reopen first. There was an open house for students and families on Tuesday ahead of students’ return on Wednesday. 

The district encouraged parents not to drop students off before 7:45 A.M. They said students can only be dropped off before that time if they are under the direct supervision of a district employee. 

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Students and visitors are only allowed to enter the Elementary School building through the west flagpole door. 

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There will also be early dismissal for Elementary School students at 2 P.M.

On Wednesday, there will also be an open house for students and families at Perry Middle School from 4-6 P.M. before students return to classrooms on Thursday. 

Starting Thursday, Middle School students will be dismissed early at 1:45 P.M., until further notice. 

The open house for Perry High School students is scheduled for Tuesday, January 30th from 4-6 P.M., and classes will resume the following day. 

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High school students will also be dismissed early at 1:45 P.M. until further notice. 

The district also said that middle and high school students must leave the building no later than 15 minutes after the final bell rings unless the student is directly supervised by a district employee. 

Counseling services will also be available on-site for students at each school building. 

Administration Education Agencies were one of the many groups that helped provide support to the Perry community following the shooting. 

Cindy Yelick is the Chief Administrator for Heartland Education, an AEA providing assistance in Perry. 

Yelick said, “We will have a team on site again as schools open, just to help with everything from people being maybe nervous about coming back for the first day and helping them transition into the building. We will be there for that short-term support that we’ve been providing the whole time. So, you’ll see Heartland AEA staff members there in a variety of roles just helping ease that transition process back into the building.” 

The district also said that students should expect to see a heightened presence of uniformed law enforcement and more adults around the schools during the transition back to the classroom. 

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