The school district says middle school kids will return to classrooms next week and high schoolers two weeks later on Feb. 22, following a hybrid in-classroom schedule.
Following new guidelines from public health officials, the school district moves forward with a phased-in return to in-person learning for its secondary students. Middle school students will return to hybrid, in-person learning on Monday, Feb. 8, and high school students will return to hybrid, in-person learning on Monday, Feb. 22.
The Anacortes School District says the phased-in approach to returning students to in-person learning is due to new guidance from the Skagit County Health Department last week that districts increase their nursing staff to keep up with contact tracing. Contact tracing is very time-intensive, must be done with utmost confidentiality, and is taxing our current nursing staff beyond their capacity. We are hiring additional nursing staff to help support our team as we bring more students on campus.
"A phased-in approach will ensure most possible success to in-person learning for all our students and our staff," said Superintendent Justin Irish. "We will continue to follow public health guidance. They have received our plans to return more students to in-person learning."
Irish said that by phasing in secondary students and following a similar model that they used at elementary schools, "we can ensure that the system runs smoothly before adding more students and complexities to the system."
Middle and high school students will attend full days, two days a week, by cohort A or B. For the remote three days a week, students will work independently on work provided by their teachers. There may also be some classes where students at home Zoom in to live instruction happening at school.
Meals will be provided at school, at assigned seats to ensure social distancing and contact traceability. Students will not be allowed to leave campus during lunch periods.
Student-athletes are currently competing in the limited competition and following all health department guidelines. The district is not now allowing spectators at any athletic events to limit potential exposure and contact tracing. The top priority remains to get students back to in-person learning. Spectators will be allowed in the near future.
Do Your Part
We all must work together and do our part to control the coronavirus's spread. If we have an outbreak at any time in a building or cohort, we may need to move a school back to remote learning, based on health department guidelines. Families, staff, and students can all do their part:
- Wear a mask
- Wash your hands
- Stay home when possible
- Limit in-person interactions
We all want to get back to normal; we can only get there if everyone continues to be vigilant against the virus.
Info nights for middle and high school parents and students remain on the schedule this week:
- Tuesday, 6 p.m. - AMS Info Night, via zoom: https://asd103.zoom.us/j/81324459579
- Wednesday, 5:30 p.m. - AHS Info Night, via zoom: https://asd103.zoom.us/j/89832789695