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Medford School District's plans 'upended' by new COVID-19 metrics

New statewide coronavirus metrics announced on Tuesday have set the bar for school districts to hold in-person classes this fall.

Posted: Jul 29, 2020 10:29 AM

MEDFORD, Ore. — School districts throughout the state of Oregon are scrambling this week after Governor Kate Brown and state officials announced new coronavirus metrics that will determine when schools can allow in-person learning.

Superintendent of the Medford School District Dr. Bret Champion joined NewsWatch 12 following the press briefing to describe how his district is adjusting to the changes.

Like many districts, MSD already had tentative back-to-school plans in place, including full in-person classes for K-6th grade and a hybrid model for 7-12th. The revelation of Oregon's new metrics may dramatically alter that plan.

A previous update to state guidance included face covering requirements for all students in Oregon.

"As of today (and please know things change quickly!), grades four through 12 will be fully virtual," Dr. Champion said in a letter to MSD families. "Students will be taught by their teachers from the school the students attend."

Because Jackson County's COVID-19 numbers are currently below the metric threshold, schools would have the option of offering in-person classes to grades K-3.

"We will be studying our options and sharing updated and detailed information in the coming days," Dr. Champion said. "We know that this continues to be a roller coaster for our families and staff. Please know that we continue to work to ensure that our system provides the best possible education for ALL our students, while protecting the health of our students, our staff, and our community."

MSD will be holding a virtual town hall on August 5 at 5:30 p.m. to discuss the evolving plans.

"In the Medford School District, we have a shared vision: ALL are learning and learning is for ALL," Champion said. "That has never been more true than right now. This isn’t going to be perfect, but we will do our very best (along with you) to support students learning and wellbeing as we work toward opening this unprecedented school year."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 21488

Reported Deaths: 357
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah496096
Washington311925
Marion293870
Umatilla230228
Clackamas154940
Malheur80414
Deschutes61110
Lane5903
Jackson4732
Yamhill46713
Lincoln4189
Union3942
Morrow3723
Jefferson3714
Polk31912
Linn28410
Klamath2012
Hood River1930
Wasco1923
Benton1696
Douglas1511
Josephine1152
Columbia970
Coos910
Clatsop850
Crook491
Baker400
Tillamook340
Lake320
Wallowa191
Sherman160
Curry150
Harney100
Gilliam40
Grant40
Unassigned00
Wheeler00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 574231

Reported Deaths: 10476
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles2105434998
Riverside41983820
Orange40527726
San Bernardino36072546
San Diego32975594
Kern24440171
Fresno17846171
Alameda13631209
San Joaquin12864223
Santa Clara12694205
Sacramento12040177
Tulare10862196
Stanislaus10264169
Imperial9693244
Contra Costa9404139
Ventura863492
San Francisco762367
Santa Barbara670469
San Mateo6318120
Merced573670
Monterey544635
Marin540481
Kings445356
Solano427441
Sonoma367047
Madera246339
Placer231922
San Luis Obispo225416
Yolo183444
Santa Cruz12436
Butte12388
Napa107411
Sutter9527
San Benito7654
El Dorado7552
Lassen6830
Yuba6464
Mendocino47210
Shasta45910
Colusa3914
Glenn3603
Nevada3571
Humboldt2864
Tehama2761
Lake2402
Amador1822
Mono1581
Tuolumne1553
Calaveras1471
Inyo1063
Siskiyou1020
Del Norte1000
Mariposa622
Plumas360
Modoc50
Trinity50
Sierra40
Alpine20
Unassigned00
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