TASD to Extend Virtual Learning Until January 8th

TASD+to+Extend+Virtual+Learning+Until+January+8th

Due to the high rate of COVID-19 cases in Blair and surrounding counties, Tyrone Area Superintendent Leslie Estep announced today that all TASD students will continue in the virtual instructional model until Friday, January 8th, 2021.

Although we all believe that in-person learning is best for our staff and students, the steady, high rate of COVID infections that continues to exist in our counties is a contributing factor to this difficult decision”

— Superintendent Leslie Estep

“Although we all believe that in-person learning is best for our staff and students, the steady, high rate of COVID infections that continues to exist in our counties is a contributing factor to this difficult decision,” said Estep via email.

With the holiday seasons coming soon, Estep stressed her concern that gatherings and other small events could contribute to the spread of COVID-19 within the community. If COVID-19 cases continue to rise after the Christmas break, as they did after the Thanksgiving break, the district may be forced to extend the virtual learning model once again.

“Planning for some additional time in the full virtual model will allow us to monitor cases over the break and settle into the new year with a handle on the known infections at that time,” said Estep via email.

Tyrone middle and high school students have been participating in the virtual learning model since December 1st and had been scheduled to return to full-time instruction on Monday, January 4th, 2021.

Previously, the elementary school was on a hybrid learning schedule put in place on November 30th, 2020. The elementary school began virtual learning on Monday, December 14th, and will also continue remotely until January 8th, 2021.

Since the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year, COVID-19 cases have continued to grow among the staff and students. Between the staff and students, there have been 46 total cases of COVID-19: 20 being staff and 26 being students.

Estep did not comment on the plan for sporting events for the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year.