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Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds laid out guidance for how public health officials will respond when students or school staff suspect they might have the coronavirus.

Des Moines Register

About six weeks into the year, the Johnston School Board voted in a special meeting Thursday to change its learning model. 

The Board voted 5-2 to switch from its hybrid option to fully in-person learning for K-12 students. The district will keep its 100% online option for families who do not want to return to in-person learning.

The in-person learning option will begin Oct. 26 for any student currently enrolled in the hybrid model.

Communications director Laura Sprague said the decision was driven by reports on how the first quarter has gone by building administrators and data on health and staff and student absent rates.

According to the district, there have been 606 absences among teachers for the first 22 student days of this year compared to 622 absences during the same period last year.

“For more than a month, we have kept student and staff positive cases below 10 individuals,” she said. “We are also very pleased to report that no positive cases have resulted in exposure to a positive individual in school.”

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The new model is the same as the one the West Des Moines School District used, which allowed families to choose at the beginning of the year whether their students would attend school in-person each day or fully online.

Johnston Superintendent Laura Kacer said the district will continue to require face coverings for students. 

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Sarah LeBlanc covers the western suburbs for the Register. Reach her at 515-284-8161 or [email protected]

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