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Several Treasure Valley school districts push back start dates

The Kuna and Vallivue school boards voted Tuesday night to delay the start of the school year, joining West Ada and Nampa who also met to finalize plans.

BOISE, Idaho — Four different Treasure Valley school boards - West Ada, Nampa, Kuna and Vallivue - met virtually on Tuesday night to finalize plans for starting school in the coming weeks.

Here's where each of the districts stands as of Tuesday night:

Nampa School District

The Nampa School Board voted a couple of weeks ago to start the school year online. They’ve also pushed back the starting date until August 24.

On Tuesday night, they went over more of the guidance of what virtual and blended learning will look like. The board also voted on a plan for athletics, which is scheduled to begin with weight training and conditioning on Monday in small groups.

The season could start on Sept. 2 if appropriate, and competitions could start the week of Sept. 8 if Canyon County is out of the "red" category established by Southwest District Health. Board members plan to reassess that plan at a future meeting if community spread of COVID-19 remains high in the city.

When it comes to fans, they will not be allowed at sporting events if Nampa is in the red or yellow categories. Once fans are allowed to attend games they will have to follow certain safety protocols, including social distancing and wearing face coverings.

RELATED: 'We are in the climb right now with this virus': Nampa School Board pushes reopening to August 24, students to start the year online

Vallivue School District

The Vallivue School Board voted Tuesday night to approve pushing the start date of the school year back from August 19 to August 25. 

The board also gave the green light to an online option for elementary schools. This will include hiring several positions, including a tech position, six certified online teachers and one special education teacher.

Vallivue District's full re-opening plan is available on their website. The district has implemented a Green-Yellow-Red system "that outlines what students, staff and parents can expect under different conditions". The district plans to follow guidance from Southwest District Health throughout the year.

In the Green category, students will attend school in-person full time. Schools will also implement increased precautionary measures and procedures.

In the Yellow category, the district will continue procedures under the Green category but may adjust learning schedules. This could mean classroom, grade-level or school closure until the district returns to the Green category.

In the Red category, procedures from the Green and Yellow category will be followed, but A/B schedules will be implemented to further social distancing measures. Under this category, the district may decide to close on or all schools if conditions warrant.

For specific details of each category, click here.

Kuna School District

The Kuna School Board on Tuesday approved its blended learning model, meaning students will be in class part-time and online part-time. 

Students will either go to school on Mondays and Wednesdays or Tuesdays and Thursdays, depending on the initial of their last name.

Students with last names ending with the letters A-L will go to school on Mondays and Wednesdays, while students with the last names ending in M-Z will go to class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

Fridays will be entirely online for every student.

The district is also offering students an opportunity to opt into the Kuna Virtual School. Young students enrolled in the online school will spend 30 to 90 minutes "in class" per day, while older students will spend up to three hours per course online each week.

The board also voted to delay the start date from August 27 to August 31.

Kuna School District's comprehensive reopening plan can be found on their website.

West Ada School District

The West Ada School Board has already voted to delay the start of the school year until September 8. They have yet to decide if classes will be entirely online or if students will go to class part-time in addition to some online learning. 

A topic of debate during Tuesday night's virtual meeting was the issue of enforcing masks in schools. The board decided that they'll deal with extreme situations on a case by case basis. 

One example would be if parents don't want their child to wear a mask or say they have a medical condition that prevents them from wearing one. In that case, the district would likely talk with the family and possibly recommend virtual learning.

Similar to other districts in Idaho, West Ada will be following recommendations from Central District Health and adhering to a Green-Yellow-Red category method of precautionary measures. 

The categories will be used to determine the amount of community transmission in the area. When in the Green category, CDH will have found almost no community spread. At this point, students will return to the classroom full-time with physical distancing and sanitation.

In the Yellow category, minimal community transmission will be found by CDH. At that time, schools will be open with limited use of school buildings. The district may also implement a hybrid learning model.

In the Red category, community transmission will be substantial. Students will then utilize an alternate day schedule. School buildings may close indefinitely.

The district's comprehensive reopening plan can be found on their website.

RELATED: West Ada School District pushes start of school year to Sept. 8

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