COVID-19: Sununu requires full-time in-person schooling by April 19

  • FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2020 file photograph, N.H. Gov. Chris Sununu wears a protective mask, due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak, at a polling station in Windham, N.H. New Hampshire joined three dozen other states, including the rest of New England, in enacting a statewide mask mandate as the coronavirus pandemic intensifies. Sununu issued an executive order requiring masks to be worn in public spaces, indoors or outside, when social distancing isn't possible, which goes into effect on Thursday Nov. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File) Charles Krupa

Published: 4/1/2021 10:03:47 PM
Modified: 4/1/2021 10:03:43 PM

CONCORD — All K-12 schools must return to full-time, in-person learning as of April 19, although a remote option will still be available for parents and students that request it, New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu said Thursday.

Schools had already returned to offering in-person learning at least two days a week as of March 8.

Sununu said about 60% of schools are already offering in-person classes five days a week.

“We have said all along, and it has been proven, that schools can reopen safely, and that remains as true today as ever,” Sununu said at his weekly news conference on coronavirus pandemic updates. “In a few short weeks, all teachers and school staff who want the vaccine will have received their second dose.”

He said doing this before the start of the scheduled school vacation week on April 26 gives schools a chance to work out some of the “kinks” and identify any changes they need to make during the break.

Sununu said during the pandemic, remote learning was a good backstop, “but doesn’t come nearly close to providing the fulfillment and enrichment” that being in the classroom more provides.

As of Friday, students age 16 and up can register to get the vaccine. They would have to go to sites that have the Pfizer vaccine in stock, currently the only one approved for use for teens. They would need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Those without a driver’s license or non-driver’s state ID must bring a birth certificate or passport. Parents or guardians must also bring documentation.

Oxbow High stays remote through end of week

BRADFORD, Vt. — Classes at Oxbow High School are set to continue to be conducted remotely through the end of the week, following the identification of another case of COVID-19, according to the school’s Facebook page.

The additional time away from in-person learning will give school officials time to conduct contact tracing following a new case of COVID-19, the post said.

The school shifted to remote learning on Tuesday, following reports of students having been exposed to cases of COVID-19 in the previous week.

Cases at Upper Valley colleges

HANOVER — After identifying two unrelated clusters of COVID-19 cases in students earlier in the week, case counts at Dartmouth College have declined slightly.

The college identified two clusters, one including at least three people and the other at least four, on Monday, as undergraduates returned to campus for spring term. The college had 36 active cases on Monday but was down to 31 as of Thursday, and there were 104 people in quarantine or isolation housing.

Undergraduates are required to quarantine for at least seven days upon arrival. Academic buildings, the library, Collis Center, Alumni Gym and other college facilities are scheduled to reopen on a limited-access basis to undergraduates approved for on-campus access on April 5.

Elsewhere in the Upper Valley, Colby-Sawyer College in New London was down to just five active cases of COVID-19 on Thursday. Just eight people were in quarantine or isolation. That’s down from the week of March 15 when Colby-Sawyer moved to remote learning after 57 people tested positive.

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