CORONAVIRUS

Cedar Rapids schools extending virtual learning after Thanksgiving break

Dawn Martin (center) looks on while her children Eleanore, 10, a fifth grader and Owen, 15, a freshman work on school wo
Dawn Martin (center) looks on while her children Eleanore, 10, a fifth grader and Owen, 15, a freshman work on school work at their home in northeast Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Monday, Sept. 28, 2020. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — The Cedar Rapids Community School District will continue virtual learning for two weeks after Thanksgiving break after another waiver was approved by the Iowa Department of Education Tuesday.

The district began remote learning on Nov. 12, as cases of coronavirus were spiking in Linn County, impacting the health care system and resulting in staffing shortages in the district.

Another waiver would extend virtual learning from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11. Students may be able to return to in-person learning Dec. 7, if conditions improve, according to a statement from Superintendent Noreen Bush Tuesday. Families will be alerted by Dec. 3, about when to return to in-person class.

“We would like to take this one week at a time,” Bush said, citing an increase in coronavirus cases after Labor Day and Halloween. “It is our greatest hope to get students back to in-person instruction as soon as possible.”

Although there has been a slight decline in the 14-day COVID-19 positivity rate in Linn County, it’s not significant enough for students to return to school, Bush said.

On Tuesday, Linn County’s 14 day positivity rate was 19.2 percent.

Athletics and other extracurricular activities are suspended during remote instruction.

“We know that this year continues to put a strain on families; we do not take these decisions lightly,” Bush said. “Please know that we will continue to monitor what is happening in the community as well as within our school district.”

Comments: (319) 398-8411; grace.king@thegazette.com

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