Carlsbad High School (CHS) will go back to remote learning for 10 days starting Monday Aug. 16 after the district received confirmation of two new COVID-19 cases less than a week after school started.
Parents throughout Carlsbad should be prepared to have students in a remote setting for at least 14 days if cases continue to rise according to an announcement that was sent to parents on Aug. 13 by Carlsbad Municipal Schools (CMS).
“We are trying to disrupt families and routines as little as possible and keep students in an in-person learning environment,” read the letter to parents signed by CMS Superintendent Dr. Gerry Washburn.
The district is also moving all students from the Carlsbad Intermediate School-P.R. Leyva campus to remote learning.
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The decision was made “proactively” by the District, the letter read, to avoid the shut down of sports, activities and special education services.
The New Mexico Environmental Department requires schools to shut down its buildings, sports and activities if it receives notification of four positive cases within 14 days.
Washburn said two cases were reported to CHS as of Friday morning, but he expects more to come soon amid a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in southeast New Mexico and across the state believed to be led by the Delta variant.
The New Mexico Department of Health reported 83 new cases and two deaths in Eddy County on Aug. 13., two men in their 50s and 80s.
Carlsbad’s ZIP code 88220 also had the most cases across the state that day.
CHS will continue to make accommodations for special education students to continue in-person learning with limited group sizes according to the announcement.
Elementary schools will individually move to remote learning if at least four people test positive for the virus in that school during a two-week period.
CHS will continue to host outdoor sporting events and will require spectators to wear masks and social distance as much as possible.
“Athletes and participants in activities must be extremely vigilant at this time as cases within a group would result in quarantines. We are doing everything we can to keep kids as involved as possible. Everyone should engage in COVID-safe practices so we can get case counts to move down,” the announcement read.
The monthly CMS board meeting scheduled for Tuesday will also be held remotely.
Claudia Silva is a reporter from the UNM Local Reporting Fellowship. She can be reached at [email protected], by phone at (575) 628-5506 or on Twitter @thewatchpup.