Schools In COVID-19 Hot Spots Should Begin with Remote Learning

Wednesday, August 5, 2020
Layne McInelly

As positivity rates of the dangerous COVID-19 virus continue to increase in many Idaho communities, the course of action for public schools in those areas is clear—school buildings in communities considered “hot spots” should remain closed and districts should shift to online instruction. It’s an unfortunate circumstance but a necessary decision to protect the lives of Idahoans threatened by a pandemic that shows no signs of abating in our state.

Hot Spots are those areas where the positivity rate for COVID-19 testing is above five percent, which is the threshold the CDC uses to recommend remote learning instead of in-person instruction. According to recent reports, about 75 percent of Idaho public school students are enrolled in schools whose communities are classified as hot spots. A document prepared recently by the White House also included Idaho among the states classified as “red zones” that should strongly consider more stringent measures to protect their citizens and reduce the strain on hospitals and health care facilities.

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