4 Huntsville City schools temporarily moving to virtual learning due to coronavirus

The impacted schools will serve curbside meals for students during the remote learning period.

Posted: Nov 13, 2020 12:55 PM
Updated: Nov 13, 2020 10:53 PM

The Huntsville City School System announced Friday that four of its schools will temporarily transition to remote learning. 

Goldsmith Schiffman Elementary and Ridgecrest elementary schools and Columbia and Huntsville high school will switch to virtual learning from Monday through Nov. 20.

Schools switching to remote learning:

  • Columbia High School
    • Traditional students/staff - 588
    • Students/staff in quarantine - 137
    • Students/staff COVID-19 positive - 5
  • Goldsmith Schiffman Elementary
    • Traditional students/staff - 715
      Students/staff in quarantine - 126
      Students/staff COVID-19 positive - 7
  • Huntsville High School
    • Traditional students/staff - 1,262
      Students/staff in quarantine - 178
      Students/staff COVID-19 positive - 11
  • Ridgecrest Elementary
    • Traditional students/staff - 416
      Students/staff in quarantine - 149
      Students/staff COVID-19 positive - 5

*The quarantine and positive numbers are for the last 14 days as of November 13.

This is due to the impact of coronavirus, including the number of positive cases, the number of students and staff in quarantine and the availability of substitute teachers.

"When you have a lot of teachers at one campus who may be in quarantine, what that does is it pools all substitute teachers essentially to one location. And so all those factors are taken into account," said Craig Williams, chief communications officer for Huntsville City Schools.

This is the second time within past month that Columbia High School has transitioned to remote learning. Williams said that ability to toggle back and forth when needed shows that their response plan is working as intended.

"We did the preparation back then so that we're now in a place where we can execute what we planned for all summer long, which is ultimately the ability to make adjustments when you need to," Williams said.

In a news release, the district said traditional students at those schools will return to campus on Monday, Nov. 30, with Monday, Nov. 23 and Tuesday, Nov. 24 already designated as e-learning days across the district. Thanksgiving holidays will take place from Wednesday, Nov. 25 through Friday, Nov. 27.

The impacted schools will serve curbside meals for students during the remote learning period.

With Madison County returning to the "very high risk" category on Friday, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health, Williams asked that parents and guardians be especially vigilant with the holidays fast approaching.

"We are partners with parents and we truly ask parents for their support in making good decisions and making sure we're promoting a safe and healthy learning environment outside the building, so we can have safe students inside the building," Williams said.

Instruction will occur as it did during the remote learning period at the beginning of the school year. Families who may have any questions are invited to contact their student’s teacher and principal.

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