Oswego City Schools extend remote learning period; in-person instruction won’t resume until the new year

Local News

OSWEGO, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The Oswego City School District (OCSD), originally scheduled to resume in-person classes this coming Monday, has decided to continue remote learning until after the New Year.

After COVID-19 cases in the district, OSCD switched to remote learning before the Thanksgiving break on November 17. The district again extended its remote-learning period after more students and staff tested positive for coronavirus. Now OSCD students will not return to the classroom until Monday, January 11.

In a letter to the community, OCSD Superintendent Dr. Mathis Calvin III said the move was necessary as county and city data demonstrates a continued rapid growth in COVID-19 cases. In the past week, 5 additional cases associated with the district were reported.

You can read Dr. Calvin’s full letter to parents below:

OCSD extends fully remote model into January

Dec. 10, 2020

Dear Oswego City School District Community,

I am writing to share information about our school district’s remote-virtual learning emergency plan. As you are all aware, due to a higher-than-normal number of COVID-19 exposures within our schools and high numbers of student and staff who needed to be quarantined as a result, the district recently enacted its emergency plan and provided all instruction remotely-virtually. This plan was enacted until Dec. 14, 2020. While doing so, I shared with all of you that this plan could be extended.

After careful consideration of:

  • County and City COVID-19 data that demonstrates a continued rapid and higher than normal growth in cases;
  • District data that includes 5 additional COVID cases within the last week, one of which was reported earlier today; and
  • Consultation with local health officials, including our school’s physician;

I have decided that out of additional caution and concern for our students and staff, the district will be extending our remote – virtual only learning plan through Jan. 8, 2020. Accordingly, we are planning for our students to return for in-person instruction on Jan. 11, 2020. Should another extension be required, I will be in touch with all of you prior to Jan. 8, 2020.

Please know, the district does understand the challenges that this decision may cause for some of our families. Accordingly, this decision was made taking into account various concerns that our parents and guardians might encounter.

As we move forward, I am encouraging all students and staff to be vigilant with ensuring all safety precautions. We are requesting that all of our students and staff continue to maintain COVID-19 safety precautions that include:
1. Maintaining social distancing (at least 6 feet) whenever possible
2. Wearing a mask when in the presence of other individuals
3. Washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 second and using hand sanitizer where needed; and
4. Staying home when you are sick or exhibiting COVID-19 related symptoms.

Should any of our parents and/or guardians have any questions about their student’s learning program, we ask that you reach out directly to your schools’ principals. Anyone with questions or concerns about COVID-19 exposure can contact the Oswego County Health Department COVID-19 Hotline at (315) 349-3330.

Thank you,
Mathis Calvin III, Ed. D.
Superintendent of Schools

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