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Two Yreka school staff members test positive for COVID-19

Bill Choy
Siskiyou Daily News
Jackson Street School and Evergreen Elementary are both part of the Yreka Union School District.

Days after opening for in-person learning, two Yreka Union School District staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, the district announced Thursday. They were asymptomatic, said superintendent Chris Harris, and their names will not be released.

To be safe, Evergreen Elementary and Jackson Street School will transition back to distance learning for two weeks beginning Friday.

“It affects the whole district,” said Harris, who is working closely with the Siskiyou County Department of Health and the Siskiyou County Department of Education to determine who else could have potentiality been exposed. Harris said that staff will be tested for COVID-19.

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The tentative plan is to continue distance learning until Sept. 25, and then hopefully resume in-person school the following week, although things remain fluid and could change depending on circumstance.

The schools began the year two weeks ago with distance learning and had just gone back to in-school learning - with numerous safety precautions in place - this week.

“We need to be safe,” Harris said. “We just want to prevent it from spreading and take a good conservative approach to this.”

Harris said his staff has stepped up during this difficult time and are focused on continuing to educate students. “I’m not happy we’re at this point but I’m positive we can continue to provide a good educational environment," he said.

Harris added that the custodial staff will be thoroughly cleaning both schools. Evergreen Elementary has students in Transitional Kindergarten through third grade, and Jackson Street School is for fourth through eighth graders.

He said that it was crucial to move quickly to make sure students and their families were not further exposed. “Hopefully we will be back in two weeks and be good to go,” Harris said.

Anyone with questions can contact the district office at (530) 842-1168, or email Harris at charris@yrekausd.net.

The Yreka Union High School District was still holding classes on campus as of Thursday afternoon. They are continuing to follow safe social distancing guidelines. Students are split up into two groups that rotate going onto campus two or three days a week.