November 17, 2020
On Monday, November 16, 2020, the Central Valley School District participated in a Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) Zoom conference call with PDE representatives and other school district leaders from Beaver County to discuss COVID spread and transmission rates in the county. As you may recall, in late summer, PDE released a three-tier system using county transmission rates as a guide for local decisions on instructional models for the return to school (Full In-Person Model, Blended Learning Model, Full Remote Learning Model). All three models are connected to county health-based metrics. The three-tiered model is based on incident rate and percent positivity within the county. Beaver County has been in the moderate level since August meaning an incident rate of less than 100 but greater than 10 per 100,000 residents, and/or percent positivity of less than 10% but greater than 5%. Those metrics are published weekly.
The recommendation for an instructional model in the moderate range is the Blended Learning Model (Hybrid Instruction) which we have successfully implemented since August. This past week, the county transmission rate was 162.1 for incident rate and an 8.3% positivity rate. The 162.1 incident rate pushes the county into a substantial designation. The recommended instructional model in the substantial range is a Full Remote Learning Model. The PDE recommends two consecutive weeks within a designation before considering a change in the instructional model. According to our conference call yesterday, it is anticipated that the county will fall within the substantial designation for a second consecutive week after Friday.
Based on the anticipated county matrix, the recommendation from PDE is the district move to Full Remote Learning. Therefore, after the Thanksgiving break, starting on Tuesday, December 1, 2020, the Central Valley School District will move to Full Remote Learning. All students K-12 will move to a complete synchronous instruction outside of the school. Students will be expected to join their classes via Google Meet daily. A refresher on how to access classes and daily expectations will be provided by each individual building principal. You can also access the information on the parent-student support page on the district website. There will be no change for Central Valley Online Academy students. The move to remote learning will continue until at least Friday, December 11, 2020. School meals will be available for pick up during this time. Information about this service will follow from our food service department.
The District will continue to monitor health data and will communicate the plan beyond December 11, 2020, at a future time. The District believes that students need to be in school and does not take this decision lightly. We understand the burden that is placed upon the community to find childcare. Therefore, the announcement is being made today in order to allow families time to make arrangements for the shift following the Thanksgiving break. We appreciate your understanding and flexibility. Our hope is to get back to our hybrid model as soon as possible. Should you have any specific questions, please contact your child’s building principal.
Dr. Nicholas Perry