By Jennifer McRae

HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. (CBS4)– STEM School Highlands Ranch is working to determine whether the 2nd grade will transition to remote learning for an extended period after the class was put on virtual learning for Wednesday. Second grade was placed on remote for the day after several students had tested positive for COVID-19, were presumed positive or had pending COVID tests.

This follows outbreaks in the sixth grade that will keep those students remote through Aug. 30.

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More guidance from the school on whether students in the second grade will return to in-person or remain virtual is expected by the end of the day on Wednesday.

STEM School Highlands Ranch said it works with Tri-county Health on the decision for remote learning as they stress the importance of in-person learning as much as possible.

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“Trying to get it a little more under control when students come back, now that we have the mask mandate maybe it will prevent the spread a little bit more,” said Nicole Bostel with STEM School Highlands Ranch.

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“The children, especially, that’s affected them, I was looking forward to the school year, going back into the classroom. It’s a totally different learning process from remote learning, you know, being in the classroom with other kids, you know, it’s different and the kids need that, regardless,” said parent Wayne Johnson.

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STEM School Highlands Ranch has said it will not do hybrid learning because it was too stressful on teachers.

The school is also asking elementary students and families to prepare for the possibility of transitioning to remote learning depending on COVID outbreaks.

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“As our number of positive and presumed-positive COVID cases continue to increase, we could have to transition our remaining grades to virtual learning for a 14-day period, per TCHD orders. With our outbreak in first grade, and the potential for another outbreak-classification in second grade, we are considered to be at an “Elevated Status.” This means that TCHD would require us to send all students remote, while the affected areas within the Elementary School are deep cleaned,” reads the post on the school’s website.

Jennifer McRae