In the wake of a surge of COVID-19 cases among students and staff, Poway Unified School District announced in an email to parents Monday night that it will not go through with its plans to return to in-person learning next week.
The school district, which had students learning remotely after the winter break, planned to have students return to in-person instruction on Jan. 19. However, more than 70 positive COVID-19 cases were reported among PUSD’s students and staff during the first week of January, the district said.
“Despite our best efforts to find and hire enough substitutes, we do not have adequate staffing to safely reopen all of our schools and programs on January 19 as we had hoped,” the district said in the email.
PUSD said it its missing “vital positions” that include teachers, health technicians, custodians and other staff who are “essential for the operation and maintenance of our school sites.” The district is now preparing to recommend the following phased reopening plans to its board on Thursday:
- Jan. 19 – Full-day preschool classes and ESS programs return to campus; individual special education instruction, assessment and support and services will resume on a case-by-case basis
- Feb. 1 - Elementary schools reopen for on-campus learning with a split morning and afternoon schedule; special education classes will resume on campus, small groups at middle and high schools return to class
- Feb. 17 – Middle and high schools open with the district’s A/B schedule
Poway Unified said its plans are contingent upon COVID-19 case rates among its district and the county.