In a statement released Aug. 3, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman said the Arizona Department of Health Services will release public health metrics later this week meant to guide school leaders in their reopening decisions.
"I want to make clear that Arizona is not currently in a place to resume traditional in-person instruction or hybrid learning model," Hoffman said. "Every indicator shows that there is a high community spread across the state. As school leaders, we should prepare our families and teachers for the reality that it is unlikely that any school community will be able to reopen safely for traditional in-person or hybrid instruction by August 17th. Our state is simply not ready to have all our students and educators congregate in school facilities. If we want to return to in-person instruction, every Arizonan must make it their mission to slow the spread of the virus."
Ducey is expected to give a press conference later this week to roll out the public health metrics for reopening schools.
"While there is need to provide some students with certain critical services that cannot be provided at a distance—such as special education therapies and nutrition services—we should not expect or ask the majority of Arizona's students and teacher to make a return to school facilities until the spread of COVID-19 is under control," Hoffman said. "Once available, our school leaders should follow the metrics when making the decision to resume in-person instruction. While these metrics are not currently mandated, schools should be prepared to be held accountable by teachers, parents, and families to make evidence-based decisions."
My statement regarding upcoming public health metrics and reopening school facilities: pic.twitter.com/wLJ55iGm8P
— Kathy Hoffman (@Supt_Hoffman) August 4, 2020