BRAVE NEW YEAR: What Are Our Chances of Being Cancelled Again?

Schools worry about reopening during the pandemic

Children+in+masks+as+Gov.+Jared+Polis+visits+a+second+grade+class+in+Aurora.+

(Cherry Creek School District handout)-The Colorado Sun

Children in masks as Gov. Jared Polis visits a second grade class in Aurora.

Lena Siscoe, Staff Writer

Frederick High has started a hybrid schedule, but there are still questions on whether or not we’re going to be staying in school. What are the limits? How many people are going to get sick before schools get closed? So, taking information from other schools that have already opened up, we get to see what those limits may be.

Colorado’s 178 school districts have been left to decide how to proceed during the coronavirus of reopening schools. Governor Jared Polis has been visiting schools in Colorado over the past few weeks, and overseeing the steps being taken in School districts reopening process. “I don’t want anybody to be surprised in our state when classes, and even schools, do need to be shut down,” said the governer. Colorado school districts make up half of the state’s K-12 population. Denver Public Schools, Colorado’s largest district have delayed their return to in-person learning because of the pandemic.

After visiting an elementary school in Aurora that already welcomed students back into the building, Polis said “Schools are part of our society. They’re an important part of our society, but they’re not some exception to the rule that somehow is immune to what every other part of a society has to have.” Gov. Polis has been firm that Colorado youth education can’t be sacrificed because of coronavirus. However, some schools around the metro area have been shutting down recently due to the COVID outbreaks in schools. Some of the following schools are:

  1. Hodgkins Leadership Academy in Westminster,  more than 100 students came into contact with a teacher who tested positive for the disease and will move to remote learning for two weeks.
  2. Fort Lupton High School in Weld County,  positive tests in two students and a shutdown of in-person learning for at least two weeks. The school put students into cohorts to prevent a schoolwide closure from a positive test. The two students who tested positive were in different cohorts.
  3. Burlington Middle School, someone tested positive for COVID-19, delaying in-person learning. 
  4. Soaring Eagles Elementary School in Colorado Springs, shut down for four days after someone tested positive for coronavirus.
  5. Greeley High School in Weld County, two students tested positive at the high school in prompting a two-week shutdown of the school.

Dr. John Douglas, who leads the Tri-County Health Department is overseeing Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas counties, said “No one should be surprised by school closures,” as well as stating “I think the proof in the pudding is to whether or not one has ongoing transmission after that,” he said. “I think that the protocols have been set up right now to be really conservative.” Both Douglas and Governor Polis said “Colorado’s now-low coronavirus transmission rates will help keep things under control.”