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Halifax County school facilities closed to students until Dec. 7 / November 16, 2020
Halifax County is temporarily closing school facilities to all students until Dec. 7, at which time administrators will reassess public health conditions with COVID-19.

Superintendent of Schools Mark Lineburg announced the closure of schools on Monday, citing “a significant rise in the community spread of COVID-19” during the week of Nov. 9-15. On Monday, school officials received further health department data indicating that Halifax County has entered the highest risk phase for the virus, with 521.7 new cases per 100,000 persons over the past 14-day period.

With the worsening health situation, “we will be temporarily closing school facilities for all students until Dec. 7,” the statement from Lineburg said.

“The health situation will be re-evaluated at that time, and we hope that numbers will allow us to revert back to Phase 2 where we can return back to face-to-face instruction for the groups who have been permitted to be in our school facilities.”

Halifax County has dropped back to Phase 1 for spread of the virus, a situation that calls for remote learning at home as the primary form of instruction, according to guidance provided by the Virginia Department of Education.

What this means for students:

» Remote instruction will continue.

» Student groups who are getting face-to-face instruction will return to remote instruction. These groups include Special Education students, English language learners and homeless students. Students meeting with teachers face-to-face through appointments

» Employees’ children currently being brought to work should not be brought to school facilities.

» The opening of Internet Cafes will be delayed.

» The plan continues to call for the resumption of interscholastic high school athletics after December 7, 2020, depending on health indicators.

» Students taking courses at the Southern Virginia Higher Learning Center will continue as normal unless parents opt for a remote learning alternative. Since these students are participating in a dual enrollment, “third-party” educational opportunity, in collaboration with HCPS, these classes will continue as class numbers are well below the newly instituted state mandated guidelines, and all participants are screened before entering the facility each day.

What this means for school employees:

» Employees will continue to work from classrooms and other work spaces.

» Employees need to work alone as much as possible, staying in classrooms, wearing face coverings and social distancing.

» Use of community spaces should be limited to the extent possible. If a community space is used, employees should adhere to the 6-foot social distance and wear their masks.

» High touch areas in community spaces must be cleaned often and with regularity.

The only students who will enter the building between Nov. 17 and Dec. 7, will be individual special education students who are being tested as part of the eligibility process and have had appointments previously established.

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Yet a teacher here is on the school board of the county teacher lives in and they are going to school. Have had hybrid learning since October. Can anyone say hypocrite? This also proves that no one knows what the heck is going on!

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