Parents and Guardians,

We received notice today of another employee testing positive for COVID. I have been in contact with our representative at the Yuma County Health Department (YCHD), Ryan Butcher, with each COVID case. He has told me we do not qualify for a school closing. As a one school district we do not have another school that students could go to in order to complete their online work. We also don’t have another school where children of essential workers could go while their parents are working. The Governor’s executive order requires that we provide both.

Parents have been surveyed. As of today, the results are – 82 responses prefer virtual instruction and 37 prefer hybrid – meaning they want the option of on campus learning. (responses by family)

When the ADHS benchmarks come out this week, the percent positivity rate looks like it will be approximately 18% and the number of cases per 100,000 would be 302. This would rise to 22% and 388/100,000 the next week. The percent positivity rate after that is currently at 26% although it could change depending on the number of tests still out.

With all this in mind, this is what I am proposing:

1. WES will make a change in the school calendar.  We will start our Thanksgiving Break on Monday, November 23 through November 26. We will come back to school on Monday, November 30. Our original calendar had the school open on Monday (11/23) and Tuesday (11/24) and then off on Wednesday (11/25) and Thursday (11/26). We will add these two days to the end of the school year. Original end date – Thursday, May 13, new end date Tuesday, May 18.

2. This additional week will also give us some time to contact parents so we know exactly who will be on campus and how many students will be in each online class and plan accordingly for their needs.

3. We will continue with all precautions.  Disinfecting, wearing masks, washing hands, and maintaining social distancing.

Once again, no school on November 23 – 26 for Thanksgiving break.

School will resume on November 30 with approximately 70% of our students online and obviously only 30% in person.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to send a message or call the office tomorrow.

Thank you,

Lisa Jameson