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Nome Public Schools to Reopen Classrooms Next Week ‘In The Green’

Exterior of Nome Elementary School, an off-white building with a smiling polar bear as its mascot.

Nome Public Schools announced this week [Wednesday] that the district will be reopening schools to students on Monday, August 31st in the “GREEN” or “LOW” risk level.

Anvil City Science Academy will reopen to 5th and 6th graders ONLY on August 31st, and Nome-Beltz High School will reopen to students in grades 6, 7, and 9 on the same date. All other students will return on September 1st.

For Nome Elementary School, all students in grades 1-5 will return on August 31st, and kindergartners will begin on September 1st.

In NPS’ announcement, Superintendent Jamie Burgess explained that the decision to move ACSA and NBHS to a “RED” status for the current week was in order to facilitate contact tracing efforts as a result of a student athlete testing positive for the coronavirus last week.

Aside from the student athlete case, NPS determined that all recent COVID-19 cases are travel-related or traceable back to an identified case within Nome and have no connection to the school community. As a result, NPS is ready to welcome students back into their schools starting next week. This decision was made with input from the Health Advisory Team from Norton Sound Health Corporation and Public Health.

Lastly, NPS stated that school buses will be operating at reduced capacity and asked parents to please use other means of transportation if possible.

The decision-making protocol NPS uses is available on their COVID-19 Updates web page.

Image at top: Exterior of Nome Elementary School, August 22, 2018. Photo from David Dodman, KNOM (2018).

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