By Howard Monroe

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Saint Joe’s Prep is now one of the first school buildings in Philadelphia to open to full capacity. On Monday morning, the school welcomed all of its students back for the first time since last March.

“We have to understand in any endeavor, there’s some level of risk. We feel the level of risk is reasonable at this point,” St. Joe’s Prep Principal Andrew Cavacos said.

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In other words, it’s back to the classroom for students at Saint Joe’s Prep. The all-boys Jesuit school in North Philly was operating in a hybrid model at 50% capacity, but that changed Monday morning when its nearly 900 students returned to the classroom.

“Jesuit education ultimately is about action, action for the community action for the kingdom of God. Philly is a city of action we couldn’t be more thrilled to be back,” Cavacos said.

Prior to the reopening, all teachers were vaccinated. Before students are allowed into the school they get their temperature checked. They were allowed to fully reopen after the city relaxed its capacity limits. Also, the CDC revised its recommendations on social distancing in classrooms from six feet to three feet. But still, about 10% of students opted to remain virtual.

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This reopening of sorts comes as more and more people are now eligible for the vaccine. Philadelphia and the rest of Pennsylvania are now vaccinating those in group 1C.

Among those in group 1C are government workers, people in construction, people working in legal services and transportation. But it comes as COVID cases are ticking back up again. Just Sunday, over 3,000 people in Pennsylvania were diagnosed. Compare that to early March when there were just over 1,000 cases. However, that is far less than the peak in December when nearly 13,000 people were diagnosed in one day.

At Saint Joe’s, they say they’ll be taking it day by day and case by case.

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“We’re hopeful and prayerful, and I believe we’ll get it done,” Cavacos said.