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State Launches New Back-To-School Working Group

Kim Zimmer
Aspen School District

Gov. Jared Polis created a new group this week to come up with a strategy to safely reopen more schools to-in person learning next year. Many districts across Colorado recently switched to remote learning because of a spike in COVID-19 cases.

Districts in the Roaring Fork Valley have moved between in-person and remote learning since the start of the school year, depending on known cases among staff or students in accordance with safety protocols from the state. 

Polis said the goal is to get back to in-person learning in January with less interruptions and quarantines.

"We know that not only do parents depend on it," he said, "but frankly we can’t let the future of our kids become yet another casualty of this pandemic."

The 15 people on the task force include superintendents, public health officials, teachers and parents from around the state. Colorado is also offering fifteen million dollars in grants to help school districts get back to in person learning.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment also released an update of the decision-support tools for educators, to aid them in determining who needs to quarantine after an exposure in the classroom or school setting. This update standardizes the protocol no matter the Dial phase of the county. Those updates can be found here

Ariel was the News Director for Aspen Public Radio from 2020 - 2021.
Scott Franz is a government watchdog reporter and photographer from Steamboat Springs. He spent the last seven years covering politics and government for the Steamboat Pilot & Today, a daily newspaper in northwest Colorado. His reporting in Steamboat stopped a police station from being built in a city park, saved a historic barn from being destroyed and helped a small town pastor quickly find a kidney donor. His favorite workday in Steamboat was Tuesday, when he could spend many of his mornings skiing untracked powder and his evenings covering city council meetings. Scott received his journalism degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is an outdoorsman who spends at least 20 nights a year in a tent. He spoke his first word, 'outside', as a toddler in Edmonds, Washington. Scott visits the Great Sand Dunes, his favorite Colorado backpacking destination, twice a year. Scott's reporting is part of Capitol Coverage, a collaborative public policy reporting project, providing news and analysis to communities across Colorado for more than a decade. Fifteen public radio stations participate in Capitol Coverage from throughout Colorado.