KPBSD Eastern Peninsula schools may shift to 100% Remote Learning

October 7, 2020

Dear KPBSD Eastern Peninsula Families and Staff:

We know you are concerned and watching the COVID-19 risk levels closely. The school district and KPBSD Medical Advisory Team joins your concern and on Wednesday carefully analyzed a spectrum of information and data.*

Advance Notice: if positive COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the eastern peninsula over the next few days, there is a high likelihood we will shift to 100% Remote Learning on Monday, October 12, 2020, for a minimum of one week. A decision will be made no later than Sunday.

At this time, Eastern Peninsula schools (Seward and Moose Pass) will continue to operate in Medium Risk (yellow) status this week, even though the 14-Day positive case count indicates high-risk levels. This means that schools will remain open to onsite at-school learning. The medical advisory team is watching this closely, and if positive cases are linked to a school, or trend upward Thursday or Friday, an updated decision for next week to operate schools at High Risk and 100% Remote Learning could happen, and will be communicated to staff and families immediately.

*Decision Basis
To determine if it is appropriate to shift schools to 100% Remote Learning when the 14-Day count data moved the Eastern Peninsula into high risk on October 7, 2020, the KPBSD Medical Advisory Team:

  • Analyzed the 14-Day positive COVID-19 case counts
    • Note: four positive cases will drop from the 14-Day case count in the next four days, which moves Eastern Peninsula into Medium Risk, if no additional positive cases are added
  • Analyzed the 7-Day positivity trend
  • Consulted with public health contact tracing knowledge, and local medical providers
  • Reviewed our COVID-19 Positive Case in a School Decision Matrix (no recent cases have been linked to eastern peninsula schools.)

Based on this analysis, information, and that no cases that involve KPBSD schools, Seward and Moose Pass schools will be remain in yellow or medium risk October 8-9, 2020. The medical advisory team is watching this closely, and if positive cases trend sharply upward, or are linked to a school, an updated decision to move to High Risk and 100% Remote Learning could happen immediately, or beginning Monday, October 12, 2020.

What to know during 100% Remote Learning in COVID-19 High Risk

  • Get-It and Go Meals are free for all students, and picked up Wednesday morning for the week
  • Pre-K, Kindergarten, and Special Education Intensive Needs students may still attend school onsite-at-school during 100% Remote Learning, based on the 2020 SmartStart Plan. Schools will contact these families directly.
  • Activities continue with ASAA High Risk Protocols in effect
  • Schools will communicate an update status mid-week to aid parent planning for the following week specific to if school reopens to onsite at school learning on Monday, October 19, 2020

What you can do

We urge Alaskans to exercise caution and take the following steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • • Do the 3 W’s: Wear a mask, watch your distance and wash your hands
  • • Avoid the 3 C’s: Crowded places, close contact settings and confined or enclosed spaces. Keep contacts limited and social circles small. Avoid indoor gatherings
  • • Don’t ride in cars with people who are not in your household bubble
  • • Limit your errands and outings
  • • Watch out for COVID-19 symptoms. Get tested even if you have just one symptom or mild symptoms
  • • Don’t be around others if you are not feeling well. Stay home and isolate immediately
  • • If you test positive, let close contacts know so they can protect others
  • • Quarantine quickly if you are exposed to COVID-19, for a full 14 days

Helpful Links

“Offering predictability for our families, staff, and communities is tricky during a global pandemic. I am disappointed the positive case count appears to be trending upward. Every day we evaluate 7-Day risk level trends, 14-Day actual positive case counts, and confer with our medical advisory team. To aid planning for families and eliminate a ping-pong effect back and forth between risk levels, when we shift to 100% Remote Learning, it will be in one-week time blocks unless it’s a positive case at a school, which might have a different response or time frame. We will continue providing district level updates every week, plus each school will directly communicate with their staff and families.”

-Superintendent John O’Brien

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