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Salida School District announced late this afternoon, Oct. 21, that all students will be in remote modality learning Thursday, October 22. After completing a full investigation into the second set of positive COVID-19 cases, it was determined that all programs need to continue in a remote manner. There are approximately 250 staff and students within the district now under quarantine.

Quarantine does not mean people are sick, but is used as an additional safety strategy to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. At this point, too many staff are out to continue in-person instruction so remote learning is necessary. Staff believe they can complete the best instruction for all by having every student in a similar situation.

The District says that it believes it is possible that it could reopen the Early Childhood Center and Longfellow Elementary School by October 27. Currently the district is awaiting additional testing data to confirm that the strategy can safely offer in-person instruction. Both buildings have remote learning till October 26.

Before the current school year began, the District went on record by saying that keeping younger grades with in-person learning is the District’s first priority.

Horizons Exploratory Academy does not have any connections with the current positive COVID-19 cases or with those in quarantine, so it will continue with in-person learning tomorrow, Oct. 22.

The District acknowledges that this interruption is a problem that was predicated and they are currently responding to it accordingly. The schools will begin working on getting back to in-person instruction. Salida Schools is looking into the “yellow” strategies as well as anything else they can come up with. The yellow phase would split students into cohorts in order to reduce spread. The yellow strategy would require the community to support more remote learning.

The District is aware that in-person instruction is best for most kids and for the community as a whole. They asks that families reduce their social circles. These cases were a result of travel and spread through social circles. Reducing school programming will have an impact on the community’s privilege of in-person learning if non-school activities are not reduced.