Nevada Joint Union to transition to four-day instructional model April 5
The Nevada Joint Union High School District will be transitioning to a four-day instructional model this coming Monday.
“With the recent vaccination of a majority of district staff, along with updated state public health and school reopening guidelines, the district believes that it can safely transition to this new instructional model,” read a letter from district Superintendent Brett McFadden and Assistant Superintendent Dan Frisella.
After beginning the academic year in a full distance learning format, the district first transitioned to campus with a hybrid instructional model Oct. 12.
However, citing the county’s move into the purple — or “widespread” — state COVID-19 risk tier as well as local Public Health recommendations at the time, administrators announced that the district would be returning to distance learning.
Nevada Union High School made the switch Nov. 23, with the rest of the district’s campuses following Nov. 30.
The district returned to a hybrid model Feb. 1, opening campuses back up to A/B cohorts, each of which have attended in-person instruction two days per week.
According to the letter from McFadden and Frisella, beginning Monday, school sites’ daily schedules will remain the same, but students who have opted in to in-person instruction will no longer be divided into A/B cohorts.
They will instead all be on campus four days per week — Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.
Wednesdays, which previously split the two cohorts’ in-person instruction days, will remain an asynchronous, “no on-campus instruction” day.
Per the letter, students who have opted for a distance learning format will remain in that model through the end of the academic year, unless extenuating circumstances require a switch to in-person instruction.
Regarding the upcoming shift, McFadden and Frisella referenced a Nevada County Public Health advisory and stated that it is “not the time to let our guard down” on COVID-19 safety protocols.
“Teenagers do not generally experience the severity of COVID-19 symptoms as that of adults, but they do contract the virus and can easily transmit it to their peers, family members, and broader community when not following state and local safety guidelines,” they wrote.
“It only takes one or two instances of noncompliance that can lead to the cancellation of student events, or worse, the return to more restrictive instructional models at our schools.”
In the Public Health advisory, officials outlined school community members’ “responsibilities during a pandemic,” including having students stay home or be tested for COVID-19 if they have any COVID-19 related symptoms; test positive for the virus; or, unless fully immunized and asymptomatic, come into close contact with someone with confirmed or suspected COVID-19.
“If parents need support to keep their COVID-19 positive and/or symptomatic children home, they should contact the Nevada County Public Health Department, as there may be assistance available for them,” states the advisory.
Victoria Penate is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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From the release: “In response to a handful of inquiries received by my office last week, please understand that this communication is a requirement of the established protocol in the county for the notification of a known positive COVID-19 case on a school campus.”