Another Colorado school district is going remote in response to the rate of COVID-19 infections throughout the Denver region.
Littleton Public Schools announced Wednesday that all students will move to online education starting Monday. While the virus’ spread within schools continues to be low, Superintendent Brian Ewert said in a note to families that staffing shortages, the rate of community spread and other challenges mean the district can no longer effectively host in-person classes. His concerns echo those of other school leaders who are working through similar issues.
“In the past few days, LPS has reached the tipping point in the system where in-person learning is no longer feasible,” Ewert said in his note. “I made the decision to move all LPS schools and programs to a temporary remote learning model beginning next week, possibly for the rest of the fall semester.”
Teachers will use next Monday to prepare for the transition, and all students will begin learning virtually next Tuesday. Littleton is expected to remain in a remote learning format until Dec. 18, the end of the semester. Ewert said if COVID-19 conditions improve, he hopes to be able to have students and staff back in buildings for in-person learning in December at the earliest.
Meal service will continue to be available to all students, Ewert said; however, child care services at preschools or elementary schools will not.
COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations have skyrocketed across Colorado this month, prompting public health experts to call on Gov. Jared Polis to take aggressive steps to curb the spread. Conditions have also sent a ripple effect across school districts, which are increasingly opting for remote learning. One exception: Westminster Public Schools, which is planning to welcome kids back for in-person learning next Monday.
Cherry Creek School District, Aurora Public Schools, Sheridan School District No. 2, Westminster Public Schools, Adams County School District 14, and Adams 12 Five Star Schools have all implemented some form of virtual education due to the virus. Denver Public Schools, the state’s largest district, also moved most grades to remote learning.
Jeffco Public Schools and Douglas County School District are expected to make the call this week to shift some or all students to remote learning.