Empty school basketball court.

Nome Public Schools will be opening in the “red- phase” after a student athlete tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday, in relation to a recent Nome-based cluster of cases.

That means that when school opens next Tuesday [August 25th], students will not be going to class at Nome-Beltz High School or Anvil City Science Academy school buildings, as originally planned. Instead, classes will be held in a fully distance-learning manner.

The district made the announcement in a media release last night. 

NPS did not identify which sports team the athlete is part of. School and public health officials are not confirming whether the entire team has been tested and or quarantined at this time.

Norton Sound Health Corporation officials encourage anyone who suspects they may be a contact of any positive COVID-19 case to go in for testing. NSHC spokesperson Reba Lean implores the community to be compassionate with any individuals who have the virus. 

“I think what we need to keep in mind as we see more and more [cases], is that no one tries to get this virus and certainly no one is trying to spread it.” 

– Reba Lean

NPS reports that all school sports practices are suspended until further notice. Volleyball and cross-country had already begun practicing earlier in the summer. The cross-country team held their first race, the Musk-Ox Ramble, last weekend.

Nome Elementary School re-opening plans are so far unaffected by this newest case; those students were not scheduled to start in-person classes until at least August 31st. However, NPS says, “all children grades K-5 will be required to wear a face covering at school. Face coverings (masks or face shields) will be provided for any student who needs one; face coverings are on the school supply list.”

Parents of elementary students are being asked to contact their students’ teachers to attend individual meetings.

Image at Top: The main gym at the Nome-Beltz Middle and High School. Photo from Nome-Beltz Student Activities, used with permission. (2018)

1 Comment

  1. Roadrunner on August 22, 2020 at 10:38 am

    Just wondering why NSHC and NPS think it’s safe to open when we are all connected as a community. Do they have an explanation on how they are controlling spread and ensuring their statements that school is safe for students and staff? Seems like they are pushing this forward regardless of community spread. Very concerning.