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KCSD schools remain closed until Dec. 4

Meal distribution scheduled Dec. 2

MILL HALL — Keystone Central School District superintendent Jacquelyn Martin has posted an update to students, parents and families announcing that the district will continue with remote learning until at least Friday, Dec. 4. Additionally, all athletic events and practices are postponed until that date as well.

Martin cited “raging” case counts of COVID-19 in Clinton County.

In the statement, Martin said “there is significant data to support making this decision. The COVID-19 infection rate is raging and it is simply not safe enough for our staff or students to return to school for full in-person learning.

“KCSD will continue with a full remote learning model and postpone all athletic practices and events until Dec. 4. Our team will continue to monitor the local data to determine if we can return to school on Monday, Dec. 7.”

Martin continued: “During my morning meeting with the Clinton County Emergency Coalition I learned that as of Tuesday, there were 211 active cases of COVID-19 in Clinton County (based on a rolling 14 day period). Additionally, there have been more cases in our county in November than in the previous seven months in total. Hospitalizations continue to increase locally and throughout Pennsylvania and are at an all time high. I urge everyone to follow all safety guidelines including proper hygiene, physical distancing, mask wearing, as well as avoiding group gatherings and travel.”

According to Martin, the school’s administrative team “will continue to work with families to support you during this difficult time. Contact your child’s teacher or principal for immediate support.”

Christina Manning, director of Pupil Services, said that the need to keep students and staff safe outweighs the need for face-to-face instruction.

“Even though we know that most kids learn best in face-to-face instruction, we need to make sure that our students and staff are safe. With the number of cases continuously rising in our community and with the gatherings that Thanksgiving brought, it makes sense to keep our staff and students remote to not add to the spread within our schools,” Manning said.

In the interim, Manning hopes that everyone will stay safe as the district prepares for whatever lies ahead.

“We want to encourage everyone to do their part by wearing their masks and social distancing as much as possible, so that we can get back to face-to-face instruction as soon as possible,” Manning said.

Megan Hull, director of Curriculum Innovation, said that she realizes remote instruction is not ideal, but KCSD is doing everything it can to make things work.

“Even though remote instruction isn’t always easy for students, parents and teachers, we are committed to providing an excellent education while in the remote model. We know that the best place for our students to learn is in school, but we can continue to provide meaningful learning experiences and continue to support students’ academic, social and emotional well being while remote,” Hull said.

The district said that meals will be available for pick up at all schools on Wednesday, Dec. 2. Liberty Curtin, Mill Hall, Robb, Woodward and CMMS distribution times are from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Renovo Elementary will distribute from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Central Mountain and Bucktail high schools will distribute from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Martin said that she appreciates the efforts of all the teachers in the district during this time.

“I am extremely grateful for our teachers as they have been working overtime to prepare for quality distance learning experiences,” Martin said.

The KCSD school board will meet just once in December. The re-organizational meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 3, followed by a voting meeting at 7 p.m. The meetings will be held via Zoom.

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