In October, the Seaside School District was “cautiously optimistic” about a return to in-person instruction in early December, which coincided with the start of a new term.
With new numbers showing a rise in coronavirus cases in Clatsop County, the school district is reconsidering.
“We will not return to school until we meet the metrics established by the Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Health Authority and we have required safety protocols firmly in place,” Jeff Roberts, the Seaside High School principal, said Monday.
A steady rise in the county, state and national case counts has made the early December goal to appear less likely, Roberts said.
The county reported its first death earlier this week.
Carlos Anaya, a former press operator at The Astorian, died last week after being hospitalized for the coronavirus.
Friends of Anaya, 62, said he was moved from Columbia Memorial Hospital in Astoria to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington, in early November, where he was on a ventilator.
The county declined to confirm that Anaya was the county’s first death from the virus, but friends who were notified of his death believe he fits the description.
The county on Wednesday reported that six people living in the northern part of the county have tested positive for the coronavirus.
The cases include a man and woman in their 20s, a woman in her 30s, a man in his 50s, a woman in her 60s and a man in his 80s.
One of the new cases was hospitalized and the others were recovering at home.
The county has recorded 314 cases since March. According to the county, four were hospitalized and one has died.
An earlier case originally included in the county’s case count was determined to be a resident of another county.
The Oregon Health Authority reported 59,669 cases and 788 deaths from the virus statewide as of Wednesday morning.
Hospitalizations reached a record 406, according to the health authority.
The health authority tracked 8,079 test results in Clatsop County, including 311 of the positive cases.
“The one consistent in 2020 is that there are new obstacles to tackle every day,” Roberts said. “More than ever, we need to rely on each other as members of a community who all want the best for our kids.
“I want to assure you that we are committed to serving our students and families and I appreciate your continued support as we navigate this together.”