Horace, North Dakota – Everyone at Horace Elementary School will begin studying online on Friday, January 21, as a result of an increase in the number of COVID-19 instances being reported.
The West Fargo School Board established thresholds for implementation to determine whether further mitigation methods should be introduced in a classroom, across a grade level, or across the whole school. One important set of thresholds is when 5 percent of a school’s combined staff and student population is confirmed as an active positive case. According to school administrators, the total number of students at Horace Elementary is 18.
Officials at Horace Elementary School state that there are already 21 active positive cases as early as Thursday morning.
“While 21 may not seem like a large number, more than half of these cases are amongst our staff. Between COVID and other leave reasons, we expect to have over 50% of our staff absent tomorrow, Friday, January 21,” said Heather Leas, Director of Health, Safety and Public Relations for West Fargo Schools.
Starting on Friday, January 21, and continuing through Tuesday, January 25, the whole school will engage in virtual learning. On Thursday, students will be sent home with their devices and teaching materials. Every day at 9:30 a.m., students are requested to join their teacher in Microsoft Teams in the virtual classroom. Additional information on the remainder of their day will be given at that time.
Based on the case data, West Fargo Schools believes that further mitigating actions, such as the continuance of schoolwide masking when students return next Wednesday, may be required.