SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Students in the Sioux Falls School District return to the classroom this Thursday, and on Monday the school board unanimously approved the “Return to Learn” plan, which says “The District expects students and staff to wear a face covering while on school property.”
The status of each school will be somewhere on a green, yellow and red continuum. Green level one means no confirmed COVID-19 cases and the schedule is normal. Green level two means that there is a case and the classroom schedule is changed. Yellow means there is spread and the building’s schedule will be changed.
“Finally, there would be a red status which would be confirmed significant spread within a building that would result in the status of the building being closed and we would move to fully remote learning,” said Doug Morrison, director of research, innovation and accountability with the district.
“We’re going to try and do things now by school, which will feel different,” Superintendent Jane Stavem said. “So there will be a web page that parents and community members can go to if they want clarity about what status their school is in, and they’ll be able to go and click on their school and see it very clearly.”
Each school begins at the green level.
“The levels will be determined based upon many factors,” Morrison said. “So, just all situations are very much unique to the school, and the factors could include building size, building layouts, case levels, whether positive or quarantine, type of staff affected.”
“We’re going to take into account the physical structure of a building, numbers of staff absent, if we can operate from day-to-day, if we have other data that we get from public health or trends that we see,” Stavem said. “All of those things will play into what’s reflected in our dashboard.”
Stavem says there isn’t an exact number that would mean a move to remote learning, nor will the numbers of positive cases be released.
“We’re using those numbers as part of our work to reflect that in the dashboard,” Stavem said. “The directive from Department of Health has been that that information is not released publicly.”