Note: Recordings and documents for agenda items can be accessed via BoardDocs by clicking on the corresponding agenda items.
In a special meeting, the Board of Education approved a moving-forward roadmap the District will follow as school communities experience increases in positive COVID-19 cases. As a result of the new plan, Corner Canyon High will pivot on Monday, Sept. 21 to an online-learning instruction model for 14 days. Information will be posted on the Canyons District website and the community will receive a letter informing them of the temporary schedule change.
The newly approved plan was based on recommendations crafted by a sub-committee of the Board. This group, made up of Board members Steve Wrigley, Clareen Arnold, and Amanda Oaks, met on Thursday with members of the Administration to discuss current COVID-19 positive cases, the response to the rates, and how the District can move forward safely.
To guide the Canyons Board of Education and Administration as the community works together to face this public-health challenge, the following measures will be taken by Canyons District:
- Canyons District will launch a data dashboard that includes school-community positive cases per school for those enrolled in in-person learning, the attendance rate for in-person learning, the number of quarantined students, the percentage of students at each school, and community spread by ZIP code.
- The Canyons’ dashboard will identify by tiers of concern the number of positive cases of COVID-19 in the previous two weeks:
- Tier 1 would indicate 0 or 1-5 cases in the previous two weeks.
- Tier 2 would indicate 6 to 14 cases in the previous two weeks.
- Tier 3 would be 15 cases or more in the previous two weeks.
- No action will be required for school communities that are in Tier 1.
- For school communities in Tier 2, a “vigilance letter” will be sent to parents and guardians, and enhanced mitigation strategies will be developed and put into place. The Administration will increase discussion and collaboration with the Salt Lake County Health Department and Board of Education about the affected school communities.
- For school communities in Tier 3, the District will continue collaborative efforts with the health department and identify and discuss other mitigation strategies. The Board of Education will be the final arbiter on any action taken.
- If CSD elementary or middle schools reach a 15-case threshold within a two-week period, the District will engage in immediate discussions with the health department on potential changes in a school’s schedule or other precautionary measures, which may include a temporary pivot to online-learning-only instructional model.
- If any CSD traditional high school reaches a 1 percent positive COVID-19 school-community rate within a two-week period, the District will engage in an immediate discussion with the local health department on potential changes to the school schedule or other precautionary measures. The Board of Education will then meet in an official capacity to consider recommended measures.
- If any CSD traditional high school reaches a 2 percent COVID-19 school-community positive rate within a two-week period, it will trigger a pivot to online learning for 14 days.
- If there are three or more students in one classroom or involved in an extracurricular activity who test positive within a two-week period, the entire class will be quarantined for 14 days from the last exposure, as determined by contact tracing.
One big challenge: If the Districts would have adopted a 5 or 10 percent threshold, said Board member Oaks, the amount of required work to track and trace the positive COVID-19 cases becomes overwhelming for school nurses and other staff. Then, teachers are put in the difficult position of having to teach in-person students while also supporting the students on quarantine or isolation. The amount of that work at the current level of staff and faculty is simply unsustainable, Oaks said. Also, the greater number of positive cases results in exponentially greater numbers of students on quarantine. In a short period of time, said Director of Responsive Services Director BJ Weller, a significant number of the school population would be out of school.
The Board will continue discussing the District’s COVID-19 response at a meeting next week.