Oregon asks school districts to make their own plans for next school year

Districts will be able to decide whether classes are conducted with students in the school, at home through distance learning, or through a 'hybrid model.'

Posted: Jun 10, 2020 11:02 AM
Updated: Jun 10, 2020 7:22 PM

SALEM, Ore. — The Oregon Department of Education (ODE) on Wednesday released its long-awaited guidance for schools that are looking ahead to a new school year amid the continued threat of coronavirus, following months of ambiguity.

Under the guidance, each district in the state will work to develop its own plan, an "Operational Blueprint for Reentry" that could consist of bringing students back to the classroom, continuing distance learning, or creating a hybrid learning model.

Districts will also have to develop communicable disease management plans in the event of COVID-19 outbreaks at a school, being ready to return to distance learning or modify school calendars if that happens.


RELATED: Oregon schools will remain closed through summer, Governor Brown announces at press conference


“This model, developed under Governor Brown’s leadership, provides statewide guidance that each school district will use independently to plan for the education and safety of students during the 2020-21 school year," said ODE director Colt Gill. "We understand and honor the importance of local voice, leadership and control. These individual plans will reflect the distinct strengths and needs of each district and community.”

Before the beginning of the school year, the plan developed by each district must be reviewed by the local school board and made available to the community on the district website, ODE said. Schools within a given district will decide what form their education will take, under the direction of the district.

ODE said that its guidance, "Ready Schools, Safe Learners," will continue to evolve over the year as districts, public health agencies, and community feedback.

“I appreciate the extensive planning given to the return to school for our children and school staff,” said Oregon Parent Teacher Association President Kristi Dille. “We know the new school year will look different but using the best information from educators, health care leaders and science brings hope for a safe and healthy return to school. The ODE/OHA guidance recognizes local health and education needs and guide a healthy and positive way for us to return to the classroom.”

The current guidance plan requires schools to "establish a minimum of 35 square feet per person" when figuring out room capacity for in-classroom learning, in addition to other methods of enforcing physical distancing. Schools would also be required to visually screen students and staff for symptoms of concern before they enter the school every day.

At the same time that ODE released its guidance, Governor Kate Brown announced that she will form a council to advise her and ODE on the reopening process, with a focus on historically underserved communities.

"This disease impacts us all. With this council, we will gather input from teachers, educators, support staff, parents, caregivers, administrators, and health care experts, from urban and rural school districts, to ensure that the Ready Schools, Safe Learners process is equitable and inclusive of all community perspectives," Brown said.

This is a developing story and will be updated with more details as they emerge.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313161

Reported Deaths: 3594
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah51245642
Washington34995276
Marion32577393
Clackamas26570271
Lane23989246
Jackson20977257
Deschutes16623102
Umatilla12602125
Douglas10712188
Linn1046886
Josephine8659165
Yamhill744999
Klamath643491
Polk623570
Malheur479467
Benton461927
Coos412069
Columbia324237
Jefferson313746
Lincoln276330
Union272737
Wasco239039
Crook212338
Clatsop211725
Tillamook181523
Baker174421
Morrow167921
Curry166817
Hood River163035
Harney78916
Grant7558
Lake6768
Wallowa50811
Gilliam1374
Sherman1283
Wheeler651
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4644566

Reported Deaths: 68019
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles144512125852
Riverside3579884804
San Diego3495814009
San Bernardino3472035506
Orange3146225354
Sacramento1503072089
Santa Clara1405641841
Fresno1358611888
Kern1358421515
Alameda1162141329
Ventura976901120
San Joaquin973871615
Contra Costa95727924
Stanislaus806991234
Tulare72969896
San Mateo52239607
San Francisco51907605
Monterey49465565
Solano44151312
Santa Barbara43112500
Sonoma39441378
Merced39370535
Placer36487364
Imperial34261755
Kings30124284
San Luis Obispo28300313
Madera21707258
Butte21307230
Shasta20683276
Santa Cruz20151211
Yolo19143239
Marin17106242
El Dorado16004127
Sutter13094153
Napa1226895
Yuba926061
Nevada847685
Humboldt829587
Tehama823784
San Benito709067
Mendocino685575
Lassen637627
Tuolumne615393
Lake603687
Amador492259
Glenn398030
Siskiyou389541
Calaveras342266
Del Norte336034
Colusa290918
Inyo166539
Mono14935
Plumas12406
Mariposa99712
Trinity72010
Modoc6278
Sierra1980
Unassigned1650
Alpine1000
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