Students in Manhattan-Ogden Schools will stay in the hybrid classroom mode for the immediate future.
The school board discussed maintaining Hybrid versus other modes of instruction, and formally held no vote. This follows announcements earlier this week, that students at all Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 schools will go into a full-distance learning format on Nov. 23 and Nov. 24 allowing for deep-cleaning of facilities.
Marvin Wade, Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 superintendent, addressed rumors circulating about returning to a in-person five-days-a-week schedule by Jan. 5, saying that this is the goal but not a promise.
“Yes, we are committed to planning that and if the metrics and if our situations allow us to, we will,” Wade said. “But that is not a promise to anybody that we will do it. We will do it when we can do it safely, but we will be ready for it because we are planning for it.”
Karla Hagemeister, Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 Board of Education president, highlighted that schools are not the sources of outbreaks and precautions being taken are working, but concerns remain about upcoming social gatherings taking place outside the walls of these schools.
“So for us to stay open, for us to keep serving kids, we have to change some things in our community,” Hagemeister said. “We have to change some of things we are doing outside of the school walls because, if we lose our staff, we cannot serve our kids. We can only control what is happening with these walls.”
Kristin Brighton, Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 Board of Education member, speaking on the matter of hospitals filling to capacity in the region, said that schools could also reach unmanageable numbers as the families gather over the holidays and she could support going fully remote if the situation worsens.
“We need to be encouraging people to stay home if they’re not in their place of work doing the job that they do,” Brighton said. “People don’t need to be going restaurants. People don’t need to be going to have social gatherings. We’ve hit the tipping point.”
Brandy Santos, Manhattan-Ogden USD 383 Board of Education member, responded to comments by Brighton, saying that it is not the school district’s place to get into deciding what the community should and should not do.
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