Steamboat high school going to complete remote learning partly due to ‘superspreader’ Halloween party
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Steamboat Springs High School will transition to remote learning starting Monday, according to Steamboat School District Superintendent Brad Meeks, following a number of quarantines and positive cases in the school.
Routt County public health officials have deemed a recent Halloween party attended by numerous local students that violated the county and state’s public health orders a “superspreader” event. Since that event, over 100 students at the high school have entered quarantine, with additional students already being in quarantine due to their own illness or a family member’s illness, according to Meeks.
“We were told to expect an increase in quarantines next week due to (high school) students being present at a private Halloween part,” Meeks said.
There are also 14 high school staff members in quarantine and not enough substitute teachers to cover those positions, according to the district.
The school’s transition to remote learning, or Phase 2 of the district’s COVID-19 plan, will last at least until Nov. 24, according to Meeks, when the students go on Thanksgiving break. There will an update Nov. 20 as to when students can return to the school’s regular hybrid learning model, or Phase 3.
So far the only school impacted in the district is the high school, but Meeks indicated others could also transition.
“We want to prepare all of our families for the possibility that we may have to transition other schools to Phase 2 for some of the same reasons (the high school) is making this transition,” Meeks said.
Dr. Brian Harrington, Routt County Public Health chief medical officer, said this week that Routt County is in the “worst situation” considering the recent amount of COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began.
“While we are all tired of the virus, we need to understand what is at stake and make decisions that prioritize our own health and the health of our community,” Meeks said. “Every community member in Routt County can make a difference in stopping the spread.”
To reach Bryce Martin, call 970-871-4206 or email bmartin@SteamboatPilot.com.
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