Federal Way Public Schools will begin the upcoming school year with 100% remote learning, the district announced July 22.
COVID-19 infection rates have spiked in nearly every Washington state county and continue to rise across the nation, leading many school districts to scrap plans of in-person instruction in the fall.
FWPS Superintendent Dr. Tammy Campbell said regional superintendents were advised that there is no way at this time to open schools without the risk of significant transmission of COVID-19, based on the recent trajectory of infections in King County in a July 21 meeting with Public Health – Seattle & King County.
As of July 20, there have been 1,465 COVID-19-related deaths in Washington state, with 638 of these in King County. King County currently has a seven-day average of about 128 new cases per day.
The Federal Way district will be working with Public Health – Seattle & King County to monitor when schools can reopen the hybrid model. The district could not provide an estimated timeline for returning to in-person classes. The district will provide weekly updates to families via newsletters.
“If the rate of infection has diminished, and face-to-face instruction is supported by public health guidelines, we will be prepared to transition to our hybrid model with two days of face-to-face instruction and three days of remote instruction each week,” Campbell said on Wednesday.
Campbell also said the district has created a more robust, structured and consistent learning model for remote learning that “is not the same model you experienced in the spring.”
Previously when the district shared possible hybrid plans, Federal Way educators and parents expressed worries over risking the health of their students, their students’ families and themselves if they returned to the classroom.
This week, most of the surrounding districts in South King County announced they will start the 2020-21 school year with online instruction, including Kent, Auburn and Renton.
For more information, visit fwps.org.