MILLVILLE — Officials at Ridgeline High School have announced all classes will be temporarily moving online as more than 340 students have been quarantined, due to COVID-19. The closure will last two weeks, beginning Nov. 23 through Dec. 4.
In a letter to parents and students, school administrators said, “after much consideration over the last week while working with both the Bear River Health Department and our District leadership, we have made the decision to move to remote instruction due to the high number of students that have tested positive for COVID-19 and the high number of quarantined students. We feel this is necessary to slow the spread within our school and community.”
Friday will be students’ last day of in-person instruction. Teachers will use the day to prepare students for remote learning, share materials for working from home, and ensure students know how to access their online classrooms.
“These steps were not taken lightly as we know these decisions impact families, students, and employees,” read a letter from the Cache County School District to parents. “The transmission rates at Ridgeline weren’t subsiding but continuing to increase. We also have over 340 students in quarantine making it difficult to maintain continuity in instruction.”
The news came the same day the Bear River Health District reported 172 new cases of COVID-19 in Cache County. 18 coronavirus deaths were also reported by the Utah Department of Health, the most ever reported in one day.
Ridgeline officials will be providing limited number of laptop computers and wireless hotspots for students that do not have internet access at home. The school will also provide to-go-meals between noon and 1 p.m. for those in need.
Students will return to in-person classes on Monday, Dec. 7.
The letter from Ridgeline officials stated, “Much of our spread is happening amongst friend and family groups at parties and get togethers outside of school.” It asked families to follow the Governor’s mandates by limiting interactions with individuals outside their household, social distancing when interactions can’t be avoided, and wearing masks.
Ridgeline High School is the first school in Cache County to return to online instruction after all schools were closed last spring. Box Elder High School transitioned to online instruction Nov. 16 and is expected to resume in-person classes following the Thanksgiving Holiday break.