CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Cleveland Metropolitan School District students started the year remotely Sept. 8 because of the novel coronavirus and CEO Eric Gordon announced today virtual learning will continue until winter break.
Winter break at CMSD is Dec. 21 through Jan. 1.
“This is the world’s worst snow day decision--do we go to school or don’t we? We feel it’s really important to err on the side of caution," said Gordon.
The expected announcement comes a day after Cuyahoga County went back into the red level because of the risk of transmitting Covid-19.
“Cuyahoga county saw a 50% increase in just a week so this is moving quickly back into our communities and we’re taking a cautious approach,” said Gordon.
Up until yesterday afternoon before Gov. Mike DeWine’s coronavirus press conference, the district planned on a phased return.
The move back into a “public emergency” for Cuyahoga County Oct. 15 changed everything.
“Until 2 o’clock yesterday we were planning to begin phasing in some of our students starting Nov. 9 and that would have included students with disabilities, English language learners, 12th graders that need support for graduation, career tech students and then later on pre-school through 2nd grade," Gordon said. "We also had planned to begin winter athletics in kind of CMSD bubble with really strict conditions for most athletics with the exception of wrestling and swimming and then the announcement happened yesterday at 2 o’clock that the county has changed to red and very significantly, very rapidly and so we’ve made the difficult decision to remain in remote learning though our winter break which is for Dec. 21.”
Today, 2,148 new cases of Covid-19 were reported in Ohio--that’s the second largest daily spike since the pandemic began.
Back in July, the district said the options for learning may fluctuate throughout the school year depending on the latest developments in health conditions and guidance for the Cleveland area.
One of those options the district discussed back in July was some sort of hybrid learning after the first nine weeks, meaning some of the district’s 37,000 are in school a few days of the week and some learn from home.