“We are seeing a huge increase in positive Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations in our community. The increase of our positivity rate, even as we are doing more testing, means that we are likely picking up signs of broader community spread,” said Phillips.
“This is not a position that I would be comfortable putting our children, educators, staff, and their families in at this time,” she said.
In the week of July 1-14 Middletown health officials saw 60 positive cases and eight hospitalizations. Ages of these positive cases over the last seven days in the city ranged from one to 85 years old with five of these cases under the age of 18 and a median age of 39, reported Phillips.
Styles said the district made the call now to give school parents time to prepare.
“While it might seem too early to make the call from a remote start to the year, we wanted to give our families four weeks to process the information and make plans. We believe by starting the year in remote learning, we are giving our students the best opportunity to get back to the classroom this school year,” said Styles.
How long the remote learning lasts will depend on the status of the coronavirus in the city, said Styles.
“When it is safe to do so, we will make decisions on returning to an in-person classroom environment - with a virtual learning option with the guidance and support of our area health departments,” he said.
For more information, said district officials, Middletown school parents should go to the district’s website.