State officials say they hope to have all elementary students back in the classroom five days a week by April.

BOSTON (WGGB/WSHM) -- Gov. Charlie Baker was joined by his Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Commissioner Jeffrey Riley to unveil his action plan to phase out remote learning completely.

In Springfield, public school students are still learning remotely, but under this plan, in just under two months, elementary students would be back in the classroom five days a week.

At a special DESE board meeting Tuesday morning, Riley first discussed his intentions. He said he agrees with President Joe Biden’s goal to open schools kindergarten through grade 8 and he thinks it's time for students in Massachusetts to get back to school.

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This afternoon, Riley spoke alongside Baker and said the phased-in plan would eventually include all grade levels.

“My focus would be on bringing back elementary students first with the plan likely extending to middle school grades later in the school year and possible high schools as well. Ideally, my initial goal is to bring all elementary school students back to in-person learning five days a week in April,” Riley explained.

He said as health metrics continue to improve, it’s important to take hybrid learning and remote models off the table to return to the traditional school format.

This comes as several school districts across western Massachusetts have had some students return to the classroom this week. In Springfield, a phased-in return to the classroom is scheduled to start on March 15.

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