OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee says he will sign an emergency proclamation next week that requires all public schools to offer students an in-person learning option starting next month.
The order allows for a staggered start, with all kindergarten to sixth grade students being provided with an opportunity for a hybrid of remote and in-person learning by April 5, followed by all other K-12 students by April 19. School districts will have to meet an average of at least 30% weekly in-class instruction by April 19 and students must be offered no fewer than two days of on-campus, in-person instruction per week.
This news comes shortly after a coronavirus outbreak at a high school in Clark County.
Just as Camas High School started back up with in-person learning, a COVID outbreak among some students caused those in-person classes to be shut down. The Clark County Health Department confirmed there are 13 cases.
The Camas School District said it spread through a party last Friday night attended by some of the school’s football players. So far, county contact tracing shows there are more than a dozen other student-athletes who were exposed or in close contact. They’re in quarantine for 2 weeks, and those who tested positive are in isolation at home.
As a precaution, the Camas School District canceled in-person high school classes through Friday, affecting hundreds of students who were supposed to be back in the classroom for the first time in a year.
On Thursday, Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced that every county in the state will move to Phase 3 of his reopening plan.
The change goes into effect March 22.
“Phase 3 means all indoor activities that are allowed now, can scale up. This means our restaurants, gyms and fitness centers, movie theaters, and some of the hardest hit businesses in Washington will be able to return to 50% capacity,” he said.
KOIN 6 News contributed to this Associated Press story.