School district proposes new hybrid modality to allow social distancing at secondary facilities.

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

BUTLER, Pa. (KDKA) — Secondary students at Butler Area School District will continue remote instruction this week, according to the district’s superintendent.

In a letter to parents dated Nov. 5, Superintendent Dr. Brian J. White Jr. said that while elementary students, students in special education and students at Center Avenue Community School would proceed with in-person learning, secondary students would still learn from home.

Butler Area School District moved middle and high school students to online-only instruction on Oct. 30 amid rising coronavirus cases in the district. At that time, the district said that it would evaluate whether it was safe for secondary students to return to school in-person on Friday, Nov. 6.

Related: Butler Area School District Moving Middle And High School Students Online-Only

Dr. White Jr. wrote on Nov. 5 that he intended to adjust the district’s Operating Status Chart to include hybrid/cohort instruction for secondary students when community spread of the coronavirus is at 41-80 cases per 100,000 people within the district. He said that this would allow for half of the students to return to the classroom while ensuring social distancing.

In this hybrid/cohort modality, students would alternate between in-person and remote learning. Dr. White Jr. is suggesting the district consider implementing it for the week of Nov. 16.

In the letter, Dr. White Jr. said that this was all pending advice from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and Department of Education. The departments could recommend fully remote instruction if the case numbers within the district are within the Substantial range, which is over 100 cases per 100,000 people. The district is currently in the Moderate Plus range.

The full letter can be read here.