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Fowler schools move to remote learning Thursday

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Christian Burney
Fowler Tribune
Fowler School District was notified Monday that a second grader tested positive for COVID-19; close contacts of the student were notified and told to enter quarantine for 14 days from the onset of symptoms of the student.

All grades K-12 in Fowler will be moving to remote learning Thursday, Supt. Alfie Lotrich told the Fowler Tribune in a news release.

"The move to remote learning is in reaction to the marked increase in positive COVID cases in our surrounding counties and the change in Otero County's level of restrictions," said Lotrich.

Lotrich said the Fowler School District hopes to avoid any more quarantining of students and staff that would have a negative impact on Fowler families and the district's ability to facilitate education services.

"Students and parents are encouraged to communicate with their teachers via email and Google Classroom," said Lotrich. "Anyone with device or internet connection issues is urged to contact Fowler Schools."

The announcement comes after Lotrich announced Nov. 2 that an elementary school student had tested positive for COVID-19 and that students and staff that shared a classroom with that student needed to isolate at home for 14 days.

Fowler schools are not the only ones to transition back to remote learning in the midst of rising COVID-19 cases.

Rocky Ford School District announced Monday that 8th grade students, 10th grade students, anatomy students and students on the student city council need to quarantine after the district learned that a family with children in the Rocky Ford schools was diagnosed with COVID-19.

In addition, the school district moved all classes at the Rocky Ford Jr./Sn. High School to remote learning.

"In addition to the students, several staff members must also quarantine," said Rocky Ford Supt. Kermit Snyder. "Therefore, the Junior Senior High School will be unable to provide in-person instructional services through the length of the quarantine. Due to the timing and proximity to Thanksgiving Break, starting Tuesday, Nov. 10, the district has decided to place all students on remote learning through Thanksgiving. In-person classes, using the hybrid model, will resume on Monday, Nov. 30. Please use this link to read a letter with more information: https://5il.co/mwny."

The Rocky Ford meal distribution time will be from 11 a.m. - 12 p.m. from through Nov. 24, Rocky Ford School District said in a Facebook page to its official page.

Otero Junior College also announced the move to online learning for the rest of its fall semester, which was implemented Nov. 3.

“In order to minimize community spread and maintain the health and safety of our faculty staff and students, we have decided to finish out Fall Semester remotely but strongly," said said Otero Junior College President Tim Alvarez. "This was anticipated; our recovery plans included this course of action as a plan b. Because of all our planning students will not miss a beat and will still be able to receive a quality education and satisfy all of our learning objectives.”

"Six programs will continue to meet in-person due to regulations from their accrediting bodies. These programs are Agriculture Business Management (ABM), Cosmetology, Law Enforcement Training Academy, Medical Laboratory Technician, Nursing and Welding," said Alvarez.