Union County Schools transitions to remote learning starting Thursday

Union County Schools transitions to remote learning starting Thursday
The Union County Public Schools alerted families Wednesday that students and staff will switch to virtual learning, starting on Thursday morning. (Source: WFIE)

MORGANFIELD, Ky. (WFIE) - The Union County Public Schools has alerted families that students and staff will switch to virtual learning, starting on Thursday morning.

School officials say this decision was made after 100 students and staff members were placed into quarantine over the last three days following possible COVID-19 exposure.

Administrators say they will re-evaluate county and school data on November 27.

The school district is currently planning for a tentative return date to its hybrid learning schedule on Monday, November 30.

The following message was sent out to families with Union County Schools on School Messenger on Wednesday night:

Good evening UCPS Families,

This is Superintendent Patricia Sheffer.

Seven weeks ago, we returned to in-person school on a hybrid BLUE/WHITE schedule for our students. We started school in the red zone as a county and although we have remained “in the red” all this time, we have been able to continue school safely all these weeks due to everyone’s collective efforts and cooperation in strictly adhering to our safety precautions in all areas.

If you have been checking our district’s daily COVID dashboard that is on our website, you will have noticed that this week we have reported a large increase in contacts and exposures district-wide. In the past 3 days, we have had close to 100 students and staff members placed in quarantine—this includes 4 athletic teams, an entire food service staff of one school, and all of our technology department.

At this point, we feel that it is in the best interest of our students and staff to transition to remote learning starting tomorrow November 12th. This means that starting tomorrow, there will be no in-person school in Union County and all students will be doing remote learning. We will re-evaluate county and school data on November 27th and as of now, we plan for a tentative return date to our hybrid Blue-White schedule on Monday, November 30th.

(We will continue to offer free curbside meals at all of our elementary schools while on remote learning.)

Additionally, our athletic department has made the difficult decision to follow guidance from KHSAA to focus on “in-season” teams. For that reason, we are temporarily suspending activity for our winter sports teams.

Our football team is the only fall sport program still involved in competition and will begin their postseason play next Friday. The football team will continue to follow all CDC guidelines of masking, and social distancing as well as taking extra precautions including a very thorough cleaning each day. As long as they remain healthy, they will have the chance to finish their season on a positive, upbeat note. We will always place the health and safety of our athletes and staff above competition. At this current time, we have no positive cases on our football team nor our football staff and have no staff or athletes quarantined.

This year of 2020, flexibility has been our key word. I have the greatest of confidence in all of our students and staff to rise to the challenge of remote learning over the next couple of weeks.

We are counting on the collective efforts of our entire community to get back to in-person school as quickly as possible. Please make every effort to reduce your contacts with others and stay healthy—each and every one of you is so valuable to your families at home and to your family at school.

Have a good evening and stay safe.

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