Rising COVID cases force closure of Toyon Middle School

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Valley Springs, Calif. – Toyon Middle School on Double Springs Road in the Valley Springs area of ​​Calaveras County will be closed for the remainder of the week due to an increase in COVID infections creating a staff shortage.

The Calaveras Unified School District Superintendent made the announcement to students, staff and parents, stating, “After extensive discussion and assessment/analysis of the COVID-specific situation and conditions and staff impacts, a decision has been taken” to cancel in-person classes. Campbell described this decision providing these reasons and next steps:

  • We are transitioning to independent study (virtual learning model) at Toyon Middle School for the remainder of this week (Wednesday, 1/19-1/21)…with a plan to return to in-person learning on Monday 1 / 24
  • This direction is due to current and anticipated staffing shortages at TMS (between 5-7 certified and 3-4 classified employees) which present impacts and concerns for the health, safety and quality of programs, operations, supports and services
  • Students and staff will be required to engage in three days of virtual learning opportunities via Google Classroom (communication from teachers to students/parents will provide further details)
  • We will need to have students on independent study contracts (within 30 days), we hope the state will accept these days as instructional days, or we may consider a waiver for the days, but we will also need to be prepared for make up for these days at the end of the year otherwise. Pursuing the independent study option puts us in a better position regarding possible waivers and not having to make up the three days
  • Across the district we will need 11-19 certified subs depending on the day of that week and we will be looking to have between 7-9 uncovered positions… at this point
  • Even using district and site administration, given the district-wide needs, we are not able to effectively and sufficiently cover all the positions we need to
  • We will monitor, assess and adjust daily… and make decisions based on impacts, needs and ability to address them, with health and safety being a priority.

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