WEBSTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Students in grades 6 through 12 in the Webster Central School District will not return to the classroom for full in-person instruction on April 22 as previously planned.
This comes after new school guidance from New York state, which recommends physical distancing requirements dependent on grade level, with a minimum of 3 feet for elementary school students. According to the guidance, middle and high schools may shift from the 6-foot requirement to the new 3-foot requirement, depending on cohort sizes in the schools and rates of infection on the county level.
A letter from Superintendent Carmen Gumina to families in the district Thursday said:
“Based on the updated guidance from the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) Webster CSD will be unable to begin five full days of in-person instruction for our 6-12 students on Thursday, April 22 as previously planned. Your child will continue in their current hybrid or 100% remote learning models, depending on the choice you previously made for them. All secondary students participating in the district’s special class programs will keep the same schedule they have been using all year.
The updated NYSDOH guidance does not allow for a change in physical distance from six feet to three feet for 6-12 students because of our region’s current US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) red zone status, and the cohorting (group in classes) requirement for middle and high school students. In order to move out of the red zone, our region’s seven-day rolling average rate needs to drop significantly (a case count under 100). That said, we will continue to monitor our infection rate and update families if there is a change in our ability to provide full-time, in-person school for our 6-12 students. At this point, however, all middle and high school students will stay in their current instruction model until further notice.
We have also received updated state guidance regarding end of the year events. We will continue planning to make those events safe and special for our students. Please watch for further updates from me and your building principal in the coming weeks.
Even though your child is remaining in their current learning model, their bus pick-up and drop-off times may be impacted by K-5 students’ return to full-time, in-person school next Thursday. ALL K-12 families are asked to check the Infinite Campus Parent Portal on Monday, April 19, after 10:00 a.m. to check your child’s updated bus pick-up and drop-off information. If you have never logged into the portal or need assistance in doing so, please email ICPortal@webstercsd.org immediately.
It was my sincere hope that ALL Webster students could make a full return to school. Please know that I continue to be grateful for your patience and support.”