Dr. If you have questions about the RSSL guidance, please contact the Oregon Department of Education. School reopening policy: Districts to decide; On June 10, the Oregon Department of Education released guidelines for schools to reopen for the 2020-21 school year. WESD provides this page as a resource for your use as you are working through creating Operational Blueprints for reopening schools in the fall of the 2020-2021 school year under the Oregon Department of Education Ready Schools, Safe Learners Guidance. We hear from ODE director Colt Gill. the increase in Oregon’s coronavirus test capacity, Oregon Department of Education makes temporary change to COVID-19 school reopening standards. The Oregon Department of Education says they are waiting to see ... of Public Instruction is preparing for their first meeting on Wednesday of a workgroup that will be focused on school reopening. “The state is going to have to step up with some CARES Act funding in order to make sure that we can give them extra personnel,” Owens added. It takes over an hour to drive from there, to the school in Jordan Valley, both within Malheur County. ODE said that rural health departments face unique challenges tracking and containing COVID-19. “Under our new guidelines, we’re not only recommending testing for everyone who has the symptoms of COVID-19, regardless of the severity of symptoms, we’re also recommending the testing of all close contacts of people who are infected regardless of whether or not a close contact has any symptoms,” Allen said. OPB’s critical reporting is made possible by the power of member support. This is not a comprehensive list of all resources and we are here to support you. Sales said relying on current recommendations from the Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Department of Education makes sense, but he understands schools provide much more … Those counties can open schools that serve fewer than 250 students if certain criteria are met. However, regardless of how individual Oregon counties are doing as far as positive coronavirus cases, contact tracing and other factors go, there’s a requirement that the state’s test positivity rate be below 5% for three consecutive weeks — though that metric was suspended in September as wildfires interfered with testing. Earlier today, the Oregon Department of Education released its initial guidance for reopening schools for the 2020-21 school year. Related: Oregon schools face tough climb to on-campus learning. “I honestly feel that my family will be safer with the practices in place in school than they are when traveling to Home Depot, or traveling to some of the other things that are allowed currently,” he said. That roughly doubles Oregon’s current testing capacity. The updated metrics also include exemptions for rural school districts in more populated counties. Crook County officials are among school administrators across the state scrambling to decipher the guidelines and decide which facilities can have kids attend classes in-person. “It is great that the governor keeps taking steps towards prioritizing elementary and rural schools, but she is giving us whiplash,” he said. This guidance is effective July 1, 2020 and will remain in effect The state's department of education estimates that potentially 130,000 students could at some point soon return to some in-person instruction. “We’ll be looking at all the metrics, but I think that’s an example of the kind of thing we’ll be evaluating.”. But districts are still trying to figure out what these benchmarks mean. Owens is married to a teacher, with a 16-year-old daughter and 12-year-old son. School districts have some summer homework of their own after the Oregon Department of Education released guidance for how schools across the state should approach reopening for … OPB’s critical reporting is made possible by the power of member support. The Oregon Department of Education (ODE), in coordination with the Oregon Health Authority (OHA), is updating the Ready Schools, Safe Learners guidance for the 2020-21 School Year in accordance with . Related: OPB's special coverage of the coronavirus pandemic in Oregon. “We wanted provisions to address rural towns that are more of a bedroom community to a city that might be impacted by COVID-19,” Gill said, “[Local public health authorities] do need to understand if the majority of that community works in or shops in another community that is impacted, they’re not isolated.”. Sign up to get important news and culture from around the Northwest, delivered to your inbox six days a week. “The idea behind this guidance is that some of our very large geographic counties, where towns are spread out, could have an outbreak in one community, and then for thousands of square miles, no outbreaks,” Gill said. They cancelled their live show and instead produced a Shakespeare Cabaret over Zoom, giving Gardner experience with virtual performances before facing new realities in college theater. Conditions include limiting the total number of cases in a county over the previous three weeks to no more than 30. If residents of one town frequently travel to another for work or to shop, outbreaks in those communities would also cause schools to close. If more than half of those cases occurred in the final week of that three-week period schools would have to remain closed, because it could indicate increasing community transmission. ... noting that it does not have a set date for the gradual reopening of schools … On the state’s eastern border with Idaho, Malheur County has become a hotspot for the virus in some areas, while other communities remain untouched. As of July 27, Powell said the following districts have notified the Oregon Department of Education that they have met the 3% cap for students enrolled in a virtual public charter school. “We want to make sure no local health authority would be overwhelmed by contact tracing. The influx of new tests comes at a crucial time, as Allen said coronavirus cases have increased by 25% since Aug. 31, with the average number of daily cases increasing from 220 to 285. Since then, the Oregon Health Authority has made its own changes to tracking COVID-19. Many people in Oregon have reported delayed test results in the last month, sometimes waiting for as long as three weeks to find out if they have COVID-19. As director of the Oregon Department of Education, Gill has the authority to close a school facility and address any complaints raised about flouting its guidance. Officials will also need to take into account outbreaks in nearby communities across state lines. Brown and Allen also touched on the increase in Oregon’s coronavirus test capacity. Oregon Department of Education releases new COVID targets for schools to reopen in person. At over 10,000-square-miles, it’s the second-largest county in the state and a case study in the complexity of regulating Oregon’s diverse geography. In counties with a population of fewer than six people per square mile, schools can reopen regardless of size if there have been fewer than 30 cases total in the last three weeks. Owens also acknowledged that after years of budget cuts, and in some cases total defunding, many of the rural health departments these school plans now depend on “are not set up to deal with a global pandemic, or be successful without help.”, Related: Harney County hopes public health can save its economy. Be a part of it! This week, the state’s Department of Education bowed to pressure from rural community leaders and released new standards for in-person instruction in the state’s most sparsely-populated areas. You may be aware that the Oregon Department of Education released statewide guidelines for the safe reopening of schools for the 20-21 school year. The state's department of education estimates that potentially 130,000 students could at some point soon return to some in-person instruction. Be a part of it! Allen said the increased testing capacity is allowing the state to expand its testing guidelines. The Oregon Department of Education has announced new health metrics that make it easier for rural schools to reopen. At the end of October, Gov. Oregon announces new COVID metrics for school reopening By SARA CLINE October 30, 2020 GMT SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon officials on Friday announced new COVID-19 metrics to determine when students can return to K-12 schools for in-person learning, … “We foresee the strong possibility … The COVID-19 pandemic is pushing Oregon fall high school sports to spring. Brown did not specify whether there would be changes to state or county coronavirus caseload metrics. 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