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COVID-19 Gating Criteria Committee Update: October 27

On Tuesday, NKC Schools hosted our second gating criteria committee meeting. The multiple perspectives that our committee members bring to these conversations is of great value. This pandemic is impacting our educational community in different ways. It is so important to hear from all stakeholders in making the best and most informed decisions moving forward. Our purpose statement remained the following:

To analyze district and regional data; to hear from local experts; to consider all perspectives and needs as we update decision-making criteria that ensures effective learning environments while mitigating risk for students, staff and families.

As a part of our discussion Tuesday, we focused on the following essential question:

“What available quantitative data sets and current research must be collected and analyzed to best assess the risks and benefits associated with increasing face-to-face contact for secondary students?”

As a result of these conversations, several themes and questions emerged to include:

The State of Substitutes
What percentage of staff can be without subs while still having school operate safely and with meaningful instruction?
What has been the impact of staff quarantining on sub availability and the workforce to support learning?

COVID-19 Transmission
Do we know the impact of positive cases/exposures to student/staff family members?
How much spread have we seen specific to fall sports?
What is the number of students and staff exposed on campus resulting in a positive test?
What has been the rate of transmission in districts going 5 days a week at the secondary level?

Achievement and Miscellaneous
What is the engagement and achievement level of our secondary students?
If we go five days a week face-to-face, how many virtual-only students would return?
How can we evaluate the daily structure in secondary schools (café, passing periods, common areas, etc.)?
What would our class sizes be if families were asked to declare zero vs. five days in person?

Throughout the next few days, our team will be working to collect data to answer these questions. Findings will be brought back to this committee for our next meeting on November 5 for further exploration.