July 17, 2020 NEWS RELEASE: Tulare County Schools Required to Remain Closed and Implement Distance Learning Due to COVID-19

Schools within Tulare County are required to implement rigorous distance-learning measures and are not permitted to perform in-person instruction this fall. State officials announced that the distance-learning requirement applies to schools in those counties currently on the statewide County Monitoring List.

Local health epidemiological data, including improvements in COVID-19 case transmission rates, positivity rates, and hospitalizations, will determine when in-person learning will be permitted to return to schools, both public and private. Tulare County must be removed and remain off the County Monitoring List for at least 14 consecutive days in order for schools to reopen.

“The COVID-19 virus continues to spread in Tulare County and poses a significant threat to our health and to the health of children, teachers and school staff,” shared Dr. Karen Haught, Tulare County Public Health Officer. “We must ensure a safe and healthy learning environment as the virus continues to spread and the COVID-19 pandemic is ongoing.”
 
The updated school guidance documents released today can be found on the CDPH website.The statewide plan for school operations during the COVID-19 pandemic includes information for safe in-person instruction based on local health data; updated mask requirements at schools; physical distancing adaptations in schools; testing and contact tracing protocols for schools; and rigorous distance-learning requirements.
 
To reduce the spread of COVID-19 in Tulare County and get our students back to the classroom, officials strongly urge everyone to practice both social and physical distancing of six feet or more between persons. Residents must always wear a face mask or covering while in environments where physical distancing is not possible and while in public settings. More importantly, residents should not participate in social gatherings of any kind, as a large number of the COVID-19 cases in Tulare County stem from exposure through gatherings that occurred beyond a single household.

In addition, everyone is encouraged to frequently wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer, regularly disinfect high-touch surfaces, and stay home if you are sick or instructed to isolate/quarantine by a medical or public health professional.
 

For more information about COVID-19, visit www.tchhsa.org/ncov and www.covid19.tularecounty.ca.gov


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