State Relaxes School Reopening Metrics

COVID-19 New State Metrics ImageSome state COVID-19 requirements have been relaxed, bringing Oregon closer to the standards recommended by the CDC and more in line with the requirements set by most states. This means possibly allowing students to return to in-school instruction sooner. Currently, Lane County’s COVID-19 case rate is still too high for us to welcome students back to school.

Here is a brief summary of the changes announced by Governor Kate Brown. They take effect immediately.

Parent Survey: Watch for a parent survey coming your way in this blog next week. We will need to know your updated decision on two subjects: 1) Will your child be returning to school for Hybrid instruction, or will your child remain solely in Distance Learning even when we reopen?  This information will allow us to properly staff our buildings and prepare each classroom. 2) Can you transport your child to school? Due to social distancing, the space on our school buses will be limited.

Safety: Before we welcome students back to the school building, our staff has to be trained on the required health and safety protocols in our school. While COVID-19 can be mitigated in schools, we cannot completely eliminate the risk of exposure. That’s why we must be ready to implement the public health protocols in order to incrementally increase access for in-person instruction.

Staff Preparation: The relaxed standards mean we are closer to reopening our schools (particularly for K-5 students), but transitioning to in-person instruction safely is a high priority. While learning the new health and safety protocols in the building, teachers will also have to pivot from Distance Learning to Hybrid Instruction, prepare their classrooms, and more. In addition, elementary school grades will be serving both Hybrid (partial in-person) and Comprehensive Distance Learning environments. This is another reason the shift to in-person learning cannot and should not be rushed.

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