Clallam County schools urged to start fall online

The Clallam County Health Department has recommended that all schools start the fall with remote learning.

A recent spike in COVID-19 cases has put the county well above the 75 cases per 100,000 population infection rate threshold to declare the county high-risk.

The health department said county superintendents were consulted before the recommendation was made.

“We do not make this decision lightly,” said Dr. Allison Berry Unthank, Clallam County health officer, in a press release.

“We know that this will have serious implications for children and working families in our area, but we have to make the safety of students, staff, and families our first priority.”

Local and state guidelines on safe reopening of schools do allow for limited in-person instruction of children with special educational needs. Each district has been working on plans to accommodate these children, the health departments aid.

The recommendation is that schools consider reopening for limited in-person learning when the county infection rate has been less than 75 cases per 100,000 for four weeks or more.

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