As schools anticipate a sharp rise in omicron cases during the ongoing delta attacks and the onset of the flu season, some are closing their doors and resuming online learning before the holiday break.
Prince George's County in Maryland on Friday became the first major school district to announce that all students will move on to distance learning as cases continue. Switching to online learning will begin on Monday, four days before the start of the winter break, and continue for two weeks after the start of school in Jan. 3.
"Teachers, administrators and support staff must be able to teach in person and other activities under conditions that prioritize their health, as well as the health of the school community," said Monica Goldson, CEO of the district's public schools. in a letter to the public. "Growing levels of achievement have severely challenged the ability to do so, causing concern among many school communities and disrupting the school day."
In New York City, the Department of Education closed 859 classrooms, four times the previous month, and nearly 2,500 19 were partially closed as recently reported Covid-19 infections increased sharply in the city. The city averaged 2,899 confirmed cases each day last week, according to the city's Department of Health and Sanitation, from a daily average of about 1,800 28 cases over the past 28 days.
In upstate New York, officials have announced that the Oswego City School District is shifting to longer classes from Friday to December 23 due to a rise in Covid cases, 60 cases since last Sunday, and staff shortages.
In Missouri on Monday, the South Nodaway School Board voted to cancel the remainder of the fall semester and resume on January 3 after a winter break due to a district-wide shortage caused by Covid cases. And St. Roch Catholic School eSt. Louis said we will move to visual classes this week and return after the winter break because too many students and teachers are out sick.
Some schools are doing all they can to stave off the latest wave.
In New Orleans, the public school system this week approved vaccinations for students 5 years and older. The requirement, which comes into effect on February 1, means New Orleans could be the first city in the US to claim a Covid school vaccination permit for young children. The mayor also increased the city's requirement for residents to provide proof of immunizations or non-Covid testing to enter community-based community centers for children aged 5 to 11, and the mandate will take effect on January 3.
The closure comes as President Joe Biden's management introduces a new strategy using the expansion of Covid testing to keep children in classrooms.
The plan, announced on Friday, includes a "residency test" in which instead of the forced detention of uninvited students identified as being close to Covid-positive peers, those students can continue schooling if they are found to be HIV-negative at least twice at a time. a week after exposure.
Managers want to end major disruptions in schools as the omicron diversity is expected to continue during the upcoming holidays. Schools are at high risk, just as 18 percent of children aged 5 to 11 are shot, and 61 percent of those aged 12 to 17, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
This week, the US surpassed the record death toll of 800,000 coronaviruses.