Following the footsteps of several other school districts in the area, the West Linn-Wilsonville School District announced Wednesday afternoon, July 29, that classes will be fully remote through the first quarter of the year (ending Oct. 30).
The decision, announced in a letter to families from Superintendent Kathy Ludwig, came on the heels of new metrics released by the Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Health Authority July 28 that were intended to guide the reopening process as COVID-19 cases continue to rise across the state.
"In order for West Linn-Wilsonville School District to reopen (in person), the case rate in our county needs to be at-or-below 10 per 100,000 population for three consecutive weeks," Ludwig said in the letter. "And our test positivity needs to be at-or-below 5% for three consecutive weeks. The state must also be at test positivity rate at-or-below 5% for three consecutive weeks."
Right now, as Ludwig noted, Clackamas County does not meet any of those health metrics.
All students across the district will start the year under what's being called Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL).
As detailed at a West Linn-Wilsonville School Board meeting Monday, July 27, CDL would include time for all families to learn the district's virtual tools and procedures, virtual teaching by staff, multiple live-learning opportunities each day, letter grades, development of classroom culture through interaction with teachers and peers and access to instruction and progress reports for students learning with an individualized education plan (IEP), 504 plan or students learning English.
"Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL) will be much different than what students experienced in the spring," Ludwig said in the letter. "Since that time, we have learned what worked well and what needed improvement. We have spent the summer with teacher-groups identifying ways to make Comprehensive Distance Learning a more robust and more successful experience with students."
Once Clackamas County's health metrics are in line with state guidelines, students could return to school under a hybrid model.
"The structures of CDL are designed to be very similar to the structures of our Hybrid Model," Ludwig said. "This allows us to transition seamlessly between the two and also allows students to remain longer in CDL instead of shifting to the Hybrid Model if they prefer."
Families can also choose to enroll in the district's K12 Online Program, which allows students to learn online-only for the full year. Enrollment for that program ends July 31.
More details are available on the district's website.
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