Detroit Public Schools Cancel Monday-Wednesday Classes to Set Up COVID Plan

DETROIT – In-person and online classes have been canceled for Detroit Public Schools next week as the district conducts large-scale COVID testing and struggles to establish a learning plan amid a wave of virus in progress.

The Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) has canceled all classes from Monday January 3 to Wednesday January 5 with the goal of testing all employees for COVID-19 before students return to school. The announcement comes as Detroit, along with the rest of the state of Michigan, is experiencing an increase in cases of the virus, possibly due in part to the new omicron variant.

Staff would be tested for COVID at no cost to give the district an idea of ​​the likelihood and safety of welcoming students back for in-person learning. Authorities say the city of Detroit currently has a 36% COVID-19 infection rate.

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The district will then use the staff infection rate to determine how to proceed for the rest of the week and in the weeks to come, officials said. According to DPSCD Superintendent Dr Nikolai Vitti, the district cannot immediately switch to online courses next week due to the “need to test employees” and because not all students have access to the online training platforms. learning at home.

“DPSCD has been a leader in promoting and protecting in-person learning. We know this is the best way for our students to learn and to maximize their education. However, we have also been a leader in using science and data to make tough decisions during this pandemic, ”Vitti said in a statement Friday. “Due to the Omicron variant and the low vaccination rates, the city faces a record infection rate of 36%. Infection rates are also high statewide and at the county level. If schools open as scheduled on Monday, it is inevitable that we are faced with a high number of positive cases that will lead to high rates of quarantine and staff shortages, disrupting the functioning of schools. “

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Students are also encouraged to get tested for COVID-19 at one of the district’s free testing sites during this time.

Vitti says all DPSCD students will need to get tested regularly for COVID-19, or they will need to attend the school’s virtual academy instead, starting Jan.31, 2022. Officials say 65% ​​of students are already tested for the virus weekly.

In addition to the cancellation of classes, Vitti announced on Friday that all DPSCD staff will need to be vaccinated against COVID, effective February 18, 2022. A mandate to vaccinate students against COVID is “probably from here.” the first day of school next year, ”Vitti mentioned.

Michigan health officials reported the highest number of COVID cases on Wednesday since the start of the pandemic. A number of Michigan colleges have decided to start the next winter semester online amid the COVID outbreak.

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New: Michigan State University to Begin Winter Semester 2022 Nearly Amid COVID Outbreak

Related: Michigan to update COVID quarantine guidelines to match CDC

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