September 18, 2020
Dear North Bend Families,
I hope you and your family are safe during these challenging times. We are heavy-hearted with the news of our Oregon school districts impacted by the severe winds and fires this past week. I know many of our extended families have been impacted by forest and community fires and we will do all that we can do to support and provide assistance. Don’t hesitate to reach out!
It is great to see our youngest students back in our buildings! A warm thank you for your patience and understanding as we return with many new health and safety protocols designed to keep your children and our staff safe.
I also want to thank all of our staff who have worked hard to prepare for Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL) as well as in-person instruction. I hope your student is experiencing a positive start to the year and please know that we are committed to working with you to ensure a positive education experience. I know everyone wants to get back to in-person instruction as soon as possible and I want to share more information about when and how that can happen.
In early August, Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced a set of health metrics to determine when school districts can safely reopen their buildings for in-person learning. While we were planning for K-12 hybrid in-person instruction, the metrics indicated that we would need to start the year in Comprehensive Distance Learning for Grades 4-12. Per the Oregon Department of Education metrics guidance, we met the criteria to bring our students in grades K-3 and limited on-site interventions for students with IEPs and students in groups that have been historically underrepresented into buildings. The metrics that have been met for this include Coos County being at-or-below 30 cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 population and test positivity of less than 5% in the preceding 7 days for the past 3 weeks.
The metrics are determined by considering the case rate and test positivity rate of COVID-19 in our county as well as statewide. In order for North Bend to fully reopen, the case rate in Coos county needs to be at-or-below 10 per 100,000 population for three consecutive weeks. And our test positivity needs to be at or below 5% for three consecutive weeks. The state must also be at test positivity rate at-or-below 5% for three consecutive weeks.
For perspective, our average over the last three weeks in the Coos County area was 17 cases out of 100,000. Last week (September 6) the case rate was 7.9 per 100,000 and the test positivity was 1.5%. You can track this data yourself at https://www.wesd.org/Page/1282 , select Coos County in the drop-down menu. Please note that we have already met the criteria for the exception and will continue to monitor data to determine if there is a need to return to distance learning.
We will continue to diligently monitor our state and county data and will let you know as soon as we are on track to return to in-person instruction. Again, we are excited to be back to school. We are here to serve you!
Return to School FAQ Please view our frequently asked questions page for more details on returning students to the classroom. We will continue to update our community as soon as any new information is received. We greatly appreciate your patience! http://www.nbend.k12.or.us/faq.html