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Salt Lake City schools switching to remote learning this week

SALT LAKE CITY — All schools in the Salt Lake City School District are temporarily moving to remote learning after Gov. Spencer Cox put a hold on Test to Stay events.

Members of the Salt Lake City School Board held an emergency meeting Friday night where they discussed the issue.

“In-person instruction is the best way to deliver instruction for our students, and I know that that is a priority for me and I know that it’s a priority for this Board. But it’s also a priority to make sure that our students, staff, and our families are safe. That is our duty. That is our responsibility,” Dr. Timothy Gadson, superintendent for the Salt Lake City School District, said.

Gadson then brought forward a recommendation that the comprehensive high schools — East High School, Highland High School and West High School — switch to remote learning for the week of Jan. 18 to Jan. 21.

It was also proposed that Northwest Middle School go remote on Tuesday, Jan. 18 “because they have reached the threshold for Test to Stay,” according to Gadson.

Lastly, Gadson recommended that all remaining schools in the district go to remote learning from Wednesday, Jan. 19 through Friday, Jan. 21.

“Again, this is because of the safety issue, staff/student absences, the spread of COVID in our schools, and to really continue that instruction for our students that is so critical at this time,” he said.

For all elementary and middle schools, as well as Horizonte Instruction and Training Center and Innovations Early College High School:

“Tuesday is a regular day of instruction for our students, unless parents choose to keep them home. And schools are prepared to provide materials and equipment for those parents to pick up for their students. Materials and equipment will be provided to all other students who are in-person to take home on Tuesday evening, and remote would start on Wednesday,” Gadson said.

Vice President Nate Salazar shared some thoughts before the motion was voted on.

“This has continued to be a very difficult time for all of us, and I would just urge families, and students, and parents, our community, to do what they can to keep themselves safe through the extended weekend. While this is a pause and it can benefit us in the long-term, I really think it’s an opportunity for us to really hunker down and make sure that we put our priorities where they need to be, which is for our students, their education, and the return to in-person learning as safely as it can be done,” he said.

The motion passed unanimously, 7-0.

All students are expected to return to in-person learning on Monday, Jan. 24.

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