Northern Michigan School Districts Explain Decision Making Process for Taking Classes Virtual
Several northern Michigan schools are dealing with cases of the coronavirus and that’s forcing them to take learning virtual.
“Late yesterday afternoon we were contacted by the Grand Traverse County Health Department to let us know there was a positive case within the school,” said TCAPS Superintendent Dr. John VanWagoner.
It was then that Traverse City Area Public Schools made the decision to close Central High School, for at least two days to allow the health department to do contact tracing.
“So you can imagine in a Class A school with 1,200 Students that’s no small task. We knew there was quite a bit of work left to do to find all of those individuals, it would probably take up to 48 hours actually, so at that point it was recommended and we agreed with the health department to go virtual,” VanWagoner said.
Superintendent Dr. John VanWagoner says any decision to take classes remote is made based off recommendations from the health department. Farwell Area Schools follows a similar roadmap. Their sixth and seventh grade students are learning remotely until Nov. 2.
“Our health department has been great to work with and we’re trying to follow their recommendation to make sure that we don’t have a greater spread. Currently in our school we’ve not had a positive transmission of a person within school to another person within school,” said Farwell Superintendent Steve Scoville.
Back in Traverse City, parents say the decision to take classes remote for a couple of days was the right call.
“I think it’s better safe than sorry, and if they definitely have somebody who has COVID then I think it’s necessary to find out who this person was in contact with to save the majority of the school and the kids,” said parent Lisa Dopke-LaCourse.