COVID-19 UPDATE and NEWS FOR October 8, 2020

Klamath County COVID-19 spike delays reopening plans for Chiloquin Schools

En español

Klamath County Public Health on Thursday, Oct. 8, confirmed the county had 76 new cases of COVID-19 last week. So far this week the county has 10 new cases. This message is to notify our families of the potential impact so they can be prepared. To view week-by-week county metrics: https://www.klamathcounty.org/1076/Klamath-County-data.

When Klamath County exceeded 21 cases last week (Sept. 27-Oct. 3), it also exceeded the 30 cases per 100,000 metric that allows the district to provide in-person classes to our K-3 students and at our small, rural schools. If our case rate exceeds 21 cases again this week, the district will work closely with Klamath County Public Health to determine whether our schools need to transition to Comprehensive Distance Learning. We will update students and families as soon as we have more information.

New guidance from the Oregon Department of Education allows the school district and public health officials to work together to determine whether schools may continue in-person instruction if the county exceeds metrics. The cooperation between Klamath County School District and Klamath County Public Health has been outstanding, and we will continue to leverage this partnership to make important decisions for the safety of our students and staff.

Because of the increase in cases last week, the soonest students can return to in-person instruction in schools not already operating under that model is the week of Oct. 26. This impacts reopening plans for Chiloquin Schools and the district’s plans to bring back English Language Learners who are not currently doing in-person classes.

Chiloquin Schools

Because Klamath County recorded more than 21 new cases of COVID-19 last week (Sept. 27-Oct. 3), exceeding the 30 cases per 100,000 metric, Chiloquin Schools must push back its reopening plans for in-person learning to at least Oct. 26. Chiloquin Schools in August chose to wait to return to in-person learning and were scheduled to do so on Oct. 12. Since the schools had not yet returned to in-person instruction, they now have to wait until the county maintains a case rate of 30 cases per 100,000 for three weeks in a row.

English Language Learners

Under the exceptions, the district also was planning to bring back English Language Learners who currently are not doing in-person classes. That also has been pushed back until at least Oct. 26.

Please help us continue reopening our schools

Our safety officer has visited all school buildings to inspect the facilities and the protocols being used for masks and social distancing. We are very proud of the job our staff is doing to keep students safe.

Please continue to wear face coverings, keep your distance by maintaining six feet of social or physical distancing between yourself and others, wash your hands frequently, and avoid gatherings of any size where social or physical distancing is not possible

Clarification about new ODE guidance

There appears to be some confusion around the media coverage about new guidance from the Oregon Department of Education. Under new guidance, school districts can now work with their public health departments to keep schools open to in-person learning AFTER schools have reopened.

The change does not provide districts or local health officials the ability to open schools to in-person learning until Klamath County and the state meets the state’s reopening COVID-19 metrics. Before we can reopen all of our schools and grade levels to an in-person learning model, Klamath County’s case rate needs to be 10 per 100,000 for three weeks in a row. That equates to 7 or fewer new cases a week. We have not been meeting that metric. Statewide, the test positivity rate must be 5 percent or below. The state also has not been meeting that metric.

Once schools are open to in-person learning, the district and public health officials are then allowed to determine whether or not they need to close schools if the county does not meet ODE’S recommended case metrics.

Henley teacher selected for global program

Congrats to Linnae Salvati! The Henley High School Spanish teacher has been selected for the Fulbright Teachers for Global Classrooms, a year-long program that teaches U.S. educators how to prepare students for a competitive global economy. She will participate in a fellowship and later this spring or summer travel abroad to teach.

“I am hoping my participation in the program will increase our local awareness of the international movement of global competency in education,” says Linnae Salvati, who was among 71 educators in the U.S. chosen for the program. “I also want to learn about the plethora of opportunities and possibilities our students in Klamath have to participate on a larger scale right now. A great quote from the program is, ‘We are not forming the leaders of tomorrow, we are teaching the leaders of today!’ ”

For the full story: https://www.smore.com/ynbgs


Please check our webpage at www.kcsd.k12.or.us for updates and any information about school and cohort closures.

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