Benchmarks for Reopening AESD
Requirements for In-Person Instruction
On November 18th,
AESD Governing Board approved the metrics to be used in the event of transitioning to virtual learning. These include the top two metrics (cases per 100,000 and percent positively) for AESD boundaries to be in the red concurrently for two consecutive weeks.
In the event of a transition to virtual instruction occurs, the consideration of metrics to return back to in-person learning will be determined at the December 8th, regular Governing Board meeting. In all cases, our ACE Department preschool and before an aftercare will remain open and operational.
Current Benchmark Data for AESD
November 25, 2020
Benchmark thresholds have not been met to return to virtual instruction.
As you can see, the percent positivity has remained below 10%. We will continue in the current instructional models for the week after Thanksgiving. Next Thursday, we will monitor the results and send a communication as usual to inform our staff and community.
COVID-19 cases at AESD
Updated Nov. 27, 2020
As you are aware, Maricopa County Department of Public Health releases COVID-19 metrics every Thursday morning. It is not unusual for fluctuations in the metrics and there have been updates regarding the use of the metrics this week from the Arizona Department of Health Services.
What does this mean for our schools?
The most recent update from the Avondale District's Governing Board includes the top two metrics (cases per 100,000 and percent positively) for AESD boundaries to be in the red concurrently, for two consecutive weeks to return to virtual learning. In AESD, we will continue to work with Maricopa County Department of Public Health in the event of site-based cases and adhere to their recommendations.
Since in-person instruction resumed in October, AESD has less than a quarter of a percent positivity per our entire in-person population and one outbreak. An outbreak is defined as two or more laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff with onsets within a 14-day period, who are epidemiologically linked, do not share a household, and were not identified as close contacts of each other in another setting during standard case investigation or contact tracing.
What are the next steps being taken by the district?
Avondale ESD will remain offering in-person instruction for the week following Thanksgiving. A communication about the metrics will be sent on Thanksgiving Day.
In the event of a transition to virtual instruction occurs, the consideration of metrics to return back to in-person learning will be determined at the December 8th, regular Governing Board meeting.
- In all cases, our ACE Department preschool and before an aftercare will remain open and operational.
MCDPH assures us that our mitigation strategies have been successful since we welcomed students back a month ago.
Reminders for our community
Navigating through a worldwide pandemic is a community effort. We all have to do our part in ensuring that we keep each other safe and healthy. Please remember to use a face mask in public, social distance and monitor yourself if you come across any COVID-related symptoms. If you are sick, please stay home.
As well, It is important to remember that we want to ensure a true picture of our community is reflected in the testing data. This means that it is important to have community members (adults and children) who are not symptomatic get tested regularly. Copper Trails is still offering free drive though testing. Additional resources are available and can be found here.
When celebrating the holidays, it is incumbent on all of us to keep mitigation strategies in mind. It is each of our responsibility to keep our own and AESD families safe. As well, throughout the holiday break, please continue to monitor your health and report any changes upon your return to campuses. If there is any concern of exposure over break, please take every precaution and do not send students to school until certain there is no possibility of transmission.
AESD will monitor the data as it is released on Thursdays. The data will be posted on our website weekly.
AESD is following the metrics and benchmark established by the Maricopa County Department of Public Health
- Benchmark thresholds need to be met before in-person instruction (transition to Hybrid- families who selected in-person will return and distance flex will remain online)
- Cases: Two consecutive weeks with new case rates below 100 per 100,000 people
- Test percent positivity: Two consecutive weeks of <7% positivity
- COVID-like illnesses percentage in the hospital: Two consecutive weeks with percent of hospital visits showing symptoms of COVID-like symptoms below 10%