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Union Star Public Schools halts in-person instruction for elementary schoolers until Nov. 30

School officials made the decision after pausing in-person instruction for middle and high schoolers for an indefinite period, according to a Nov. 5 letter sent home to parents.

Posted: Nov 9, 2020 11:08 AM
Updated: Nov 9, 2020 9:29 PM

(UNION STAR, Mo.) – Union Star Public Schools is stopping in-person instruction for its elementary schoolers until Monday, Nov. 30 due to increased COVID-19 cases, the district’s superintendent, Rick Calloway, announced in a letter sent to families on Friday.

“Last evening, we took a turn for the worse concerning COVID-19. As of today, we now have a total of five positive cases of COVID-19 and numerous other students and staff that will be receiving test results back over the next couple of days. Roughly 80% of the junior high/high school are under quarantine protocol, as well as 25% of our staff members. Therefore, the decision to close the elementary had to be made to reduce the risk of further exposure,” wrote Calloway.

In the letter, Calloway explained Union Star Public Schools decided to extend the shutdown for elementary schoolers from the typical two-week protocol to three weeks because they didn’t want to resume in-person learning on Nov. 23 only to send children home for Thanksgiving break two days later.

As of Monday, Union Star elementary, middle and high school students were moved to online learning.

In a series of letters last week, the district chronicled how the events unfolded. Wednesday’s letter to parents announced one student had tested positive for COVID-19. About 24-hours later, more students and family members had tested positive for the virus prompting school officials to pause in-person instruction for middle and high schoolers for an indefinite period. 

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