East Hampton High School Remains Closed To In-Person Learning Through Tuesday - 27 East

East Hampton High School Remains Closed To In-Person Learning Through Tuesday

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Desirée Keegan on Jan 10, 2022

East Hampton School District administrators announced Saturday that the high school will remain closed to in-person learning through at least Tuesday.

“We’re waiting for staff to get back from quarantine,” Superintendent Adam Fine said in an email Monday afternoon. “We are planning on opening Wednesday and do not anticipate any additional remote instruction.”

Parents and guardians were notified last Wednesday that the high school was going to lean back on remote learning Thursday and Friday due to the uptick is COVID-19 positive cases and quarantines due to close contact.

“There’s not a hard-and-fast number, because there’s so many moving parts, however, we just were not comfortable with our total number of cases both staff and students,” High School Principal Sara Smith said January 6. “All of our students are going to their normal classes virtually.”

Fine sent an email to parents Wednesday afternoon notifying them of the school closure, and that the administration was going to reassess the situation Saturday.

“It is my hope that this short break will allow our staff to get well and curb the spread that seems to be occurring in our high school community,” Fine said in that Wednesday email.

Students are currently logging into virtual classrooms via Google Meet. Even if a teacher or student is out due to coronavirus infection or close contact with someone that has tested positive, he or she has the choice to teach or attend class if he or she is feeling well enough.

During last Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting, Fine, who was out with COVID-19 himself, said he did not believe the district was going to have to close school, telling some callers during public comment that the high school and elementary school were on the cusp of needing to go remote, but that numbers were projecting downward. The high school reported 26 new cases on January 5 — 22 students, three teachers and one other staff member — bringing the total numbers infected to 77 students, 17 teachers and seven staff members over the last seven days. The district reported 108 schoolwide positive test results from January 3 through January 9 at the high school. That includes 82 students, 18 teachers and eight staff members. The number of positive cases at John M. Marshall Elementary School over the last seven days sits at 69, which includes 53 students, 12 teachers and four staff members. Fine said the high school is the only one closed to in-person learning at this time.

Smith said tutoring will remain available for students unable to attend class. The state guarantees anyone out on quarantine 10 hours of extra help, but the principal said a student will never be turned down should he or she need more attention.

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