DEDHAM, Mass. — Dedham Public Schools officials announced on Wednesday student will be starting the year with a remote learning model following a recent increase on COVID-19 cases in the town.
The Dedham Board of Health and the Dedham School Committee held an emergency meeting after a new report from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health outlined the cities and towns on “red alert” due to an increase in localized infections. Dedham was among several other towns that are now working towards implementing measures to help curb the spread of the virus.
School officials say the decision to delay the start of in-person classes was a tough one to make, but for the safety of students and staff, they had to switch to an 100% virtual learning model. Classes start online on Sept. 16.
“I regret this action has had to be taken, but we cannot have our students return to our school buildings given the current trajectory of the virus in Dedham,” said Superintendent Mike Welch.
As new health data comes in, officials will evaluate when to move on to the next phase - hybrid learning - depending on the trajectory of the virus in the local Dedham community.
“We are strongly encouraging families and community members to avoid crowds, help reduce exposure by limiting indoor or group gatherings, and require family members of all ages to remain vigilant in wearing masks when not alone or with family,” said Welch. “Our staff and educators have worked incredibly hard to create the safest school environments possible. We all want to see our students back for in-school learning. But we need your help and the help of the entire Dedham community to make this happen safely.”
Parents and students will soon receive detailed instructions on how to prepare for the first day of school through virtual learning.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.
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