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Treasure Valley schools discuss COVID-19 protocols after Thanksgiving break

Several school districts will move fully online for the remainder of the semester, while others will continue in a hybrid learning model.

BOISE, Idaho — Before Thanksgiving break, many schools were moved to remote schedules because of COVID-19 outbreaks. Kathleen Tuck with the Nampa School District said that after closing five schools in one week, it was time for the entire district to go fully online.  

Boise and Caldwell school districts will also be fully remote starting Monday, Nov. 30. West Ada School District will continue with a hybrid learning model that includes in-person learning.

“For us right now, it just makes sense to close schools that need to be closed and proceed with keeping those open that are able to be operated safely and we feel like our plan has all of the safety nets in it that will allow our students and staff to be as safe as possible,” said West Ada Spokesperson Char Jackson.

Instead of moving the entire districts on an online schedule, West Ada will evaluate the status of each individual school.

“We take a look at that data, our regional directors talk with principals and just get a good feel of where they are, and mentally wise, you know is your staff okay? Do you feel like you able to hang in there? Do you feel like this is sustainable? “ Jackson said.

For West Ada to move entirely online, staffing would have to be a great concern.

“I think that it would just have to be a really high number of cases in our staff which would just allow not to staff several buildings, that would lead them to maybe make a decision like that,” Jackson said.

Other districts like the Nampa School District have already made that decision.

A day before Thanksgiving break, a letter was sent to Nampa parents that said all schools in the district will go fully remote starting Nov. 30.

"We hope this move to online will give us time to recover and be ready to be back in buildings in January," Tuck said. "To achieve that, we really need the support of our entire community. If we all work to follow the suggested guidelines, we can get our numbers down and reopen classrooms."

Nampa School District will be fully online until January 13, 2021, in the hopes that COVID-19 cases go down after the holidays. The board will reconvene in early January to determine if any changes need to be made.

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