LIHU‘E — Short-term distance learning models will be considered on a case-by-case basis at Hawai‘i Department of Education’s Kaua‘i Complex Area schools, Superintendent Paul Zina announced this week.
“We have successfully implemented many health and safety strategies throughout the pandemic,” Zina said in a statement Wednesday. “In order to keep as many classrooms in person as possible, Kaua’i schools will address pandemic related shifts to distance learning on a class-by-class and school-by-school basis.”
This model, Zina said, will only affect classrooms that are “more affected by COVID-related absences of staff or students will need to make the shift to distance learning.”
“These are not classroom closures,” Zina said. “These are changes in models of instruction.”
Shifting to distance learning is a last resort option for schools. If the shift will happen, affected families and staff will be given 24 hours of notification. The distribution of devices for instruction will be handled on a school basis.
“We will exhaust all resources available to keep the classroom or school in person before making the shift to distance learning and notifying affected families,” Zina said.
Earlier this week, the Department of Health and HIDOE released new isolation and quarantine guidance.
Students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 or have COVID-19 symptoms should isolate for five days regardless of their vaccination status. They can return to school when all the following conditions are met:
• Five full days have passed since symptoms first appeared or since test was conducted;
• No fever for 24 hours;
• Symptoms have improved.
Students and staff who have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19 should quarantine for five days after the last contact if:
• They have not completed their primary vaccine series (two shots Pfizer or Moderna, one shot Johnson &Johnson);
• They are 18 or older and have completed their primary vaccine series but have not received a recommended booster when eligible.
Students and staff should get tested on day five of quarantine even if they do not have symptoms.
Students and staff are not required to quarantine if:
• They are ages 5 to 17 and have completed their primary series of COVID-19 vaccines (two shots Pfizer or Moderna);
• They are 18 and older and have received all recommended vaccine doses including boosters.
Anyone who develops symptoms should self-isolate immediately and get tested.
Vaccination and testing options are available at hawaiicovid19.com.
Source: The Garden Island