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TPS moves 10 Pre-K, Kindergarten classes to distance learning less than 2 weeks after return

Posted at 10:37 PM, Nov 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-17 07:37:45-05

TULSA, Okla. — As many Green Country schools are moving to distance learning, Tulsa Public Schools provided a coronavirus update announcing quarantines are already occurring in the district less than two weeks after elementary schools began welcoming some students back to the classroom.

TPS Superintendent Dr. Deborah Gist said the district is continuing with in-person learning for pre-K through third grades this week, but the latest spike in COVID-19 numbers is very concerning.

READ MORE: Tulsa Public Schools welcomes 1st through 3rd graders back to the classrooms

Giving an update to the Board of Education Monday night, TPS said 10 pre-K and kindergarten classes shifted to distance learning. Four basketball teams from two schools are also in quarantine. The district also said contact tracing numbers doubled over the last week, but that's partly because of an increase of people in the schools.

As of Friday, 140 students and staff are close contact exposures. There are 18 confirmed cases between students and staff.

READ MORE: Record-breaking COVID-19 cases statewide as some Tulsa Public Schools students return to school

Dr. Gist said thresholds for the three areas they monitor were met over the weekend.

"If we as a community do not do what we need to do to lower these numbers, then we're going to have to have a conversation just entirely about being back in-person," Gist said.

Fourth, fifth and sixth-grade elementary students are scheduled to return after Thanksgiving, on Nov. 30th. The district is asking the board to hold a special meeting this week to review, evaluate and discuss health data and take potential action.

TPS also said it's suspending spectators from all winter sports.

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