School moves online
Due to the increased number of COVID-19 cases in the Holyoke community and the number of students and staff who needed to quarantine, Holyoke School District is conducting learning remotely using Chromebooks from Monday-Friday, Nov. 16-20.
Next week, the district will not have school Monday-Friday, Nov. 23-27, because of a Thanksgiving break that was already scheduled on the original calendar.
Early this week, Superintendent Kyle Stumpf said he is really optimistic that Holyoke schools will be back to in-person learning Monday, Nov. 30, provided that there aren’t any more spikes of the number of students and staff who need to quarantine.
He said up to 18 staff members and approximately 140 students in K-12 have been quarantined because of exposure to COVID-19 either at school or from their personal lives.
The district will continue to monitor positive COVID-19 cases and quarantine factors before a determination will be made about returning to school after the Thanksgiving break.
“We know the best learning is in-person learning,” said Stumpf; however, the district wants to make sure that in-person instruction can take place productively and safely for both students and staff. He added that the district has great technology resources it can use to make the best of remote learning.
The district apologized to families for any inconvenience the move to remote learning may have caused and appreciated their understanding of the situation.
During the week of Nov. 16-20, the district is offering grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches for children ages 1-18, regardless of whether or not they are students in the district. Food is available for pickup between 11 a.m.-1 p.m. in front of the elementary school.
School takes 2 days off due to lack of substitutes
Last Tuesday, Nov. 10, Holyoke School District announced in a press release that a student or staff member attending Holyoke JR/SR High School had tested positive for COVID-19.
Later that day, the district announced that students and staff would have two days off Wednesday-Thursday, Nov. 11-12. Friday, Nov. 13, was a previously scheduled teacher inservice day without students.
The district said the reason for no school last week was because of a lack of substitute teachers.
Stumpf said the district is usually short of substitutes and the pandemic has not helped.
Those who would like more information about becoming a substitute can contact the district office at 970-854-3634 or Stumpf at firstname.lastname@example.org.