Superintendent Reopening Update #14

December 14, 2020

Dear Los Alamitos Unified School District Families and Community:

I hope this finds all of you well as we approach our winter break!

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have taken a thoughtful, measured approach to maintaining our instructional programs while protecting our students and staff. We have closely monitored conditions in the county and our community, and we have followed — or exceeded — all guidance from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Orange County Health Agency (OCHCA).

This allowed us, working in partnership with families, to safely resume in-person instruction and meet the diverse needs of our students.

We are continuously monitoring conditions and assessing our plans during this pandemic. The current surge of the virus across the state and within our region has prompted us to take these actions:

  • Los Alamitos High School will shift to distance learning beginning Wednesday, December 16, and return to in-person instruction on Thursday, January 14. While the number of COVID-19 cases among students and staff at LAHS is still well below the 5% threshold set by the CDPH for closing a campus to in-person instruction, we have seen a substantial increase in the number of people who must enter quarantine because of close contact with affected individuals. Because of the resulting disruption to our programs, we have decided to move LAHS to distance learning this Wednesday and remain in that mode through Wednesday, January 13, 2021. Our elementary and middle schools will remain open in their current hybrid schedule
  • All extracurricular programs, district-wide, will be suspended from the start of winter break through January 19, 2021. This includes all athletics, arts, activities, and Los Alamitos Education Foundation (LAEF) programs. This action is a temporary measure intended to reduce contacts between different cohorts of students.
  • Our elementary and middle schools will continue in our hybrid instructional format for the remainder of this semester and into the next. The numbers of COVID-19 cases and individuals required to quarantine at these grade levels are lower, and the benefits of maintaining in-person instruction are substantial. We have, however, moved a possible return to a traditional format at the elementary level from the previous target of February 1 to a point later in the Spring. We have not set a new target date, yet we remain hopeful and will assess conditions as we get closer to Spring Break. We will keep you fully informed as plans evolve.

As we have said so many times over the last nine months, the pandemic is a constantly shifting challenge that requires us to be nimble and ready to adjust our operations to maximize the safety of our students and staff. I am deeply grateful for your patience and partnership as we continue to meet this challenge together.

As a final reminder, we are all in this together when it comes to slowing the spread of COVID-19. Here are some concrete steps our community can take to help these efforts, according to the OCHCA:

  • Get tested for COVID-19 if symptomatic or in close contact with an infected person.
  • Stay home if you do not feel well.
  • Avoid crowds; stay at least 6 feet from people not in your household.
  • Wear a face covering.
  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.

Over the holidays, please stay safe and protect others by following all public health guidance, hold those you love close in mind and spirit, and know that whatever comes our way, we remain Better and Stronger Together!

Sincerely,

Andrew Pulver, Ed.D, Superintendent