The OLF Preschool is a State-licensed childcare facility separate from our K-8 operations. Our Preschool reopened to students for in-person instruction on August 17th.
Our K-8 students can choose to continue distance learning or come to campus for in-person instruction. We must limit enrollment to comply with social distancing. The cap may vary by grade level, but there's still space to enroll in most classes.
On July 17th, Governor Gavin Newsom announced his mandate that no school could reopen for in-person instruction until its county fell off the State’s COVID-19 “watch list” for at least 14 consecutive days. Shortly thereafter, the State repackaged its reopening plans as the Blueprint For A Safer Economy.
The Blueprint places each county in a color-coded tier: purple for Widespread risk of COVID-19 transmission; red for Substantial risk; orange for Moderate risk; or yellow for Minimal risk. Under current rules, no school in a purple-tier county can reopen for in-person instruction unless it serves K-6 students and receives a waiver from County and State public health agencies.
Once the school’s county has dropped to the red, orange or yellow tier for 14 consecutive days, it can then choose to reopen campus to all grades, including middle school and high school.
As of September 21st, we reopened to K-6 students under a waiver from public health officials. As of October 21st, Merced County remained in the red tier for 14 days and our school fully reopened to students in all grades. Because we have reopened with appropriate safety measures, OLF can now stay open even if our County's COVID data changes and we regress back to the purple tier.
Under State guidelines, once a school is granted a waiver it will not be revoked because of its county's status on the Blueprint. That means that even if Merced County drops into a red or lower tier, but then moves back up to purple, OLF can stay open for in-person K-6 instruction. Likewise, because we have now reopened to our 7th and 8th Grade students, we can stay open even if Merced County moves back to purple.
However, there are two extreme scenarios when the State could again require us to close campus: (1) there is a widespread outbreak of COVID-19 among our staff and/or students; or (2) our entire state or county is again shut down under a shelter-in-place order.
In light of our reopening campus to most grades starting September 21st, OLF will be observing our previously announced Extended Winter Break. Students will be off school starting Thanksgiving Day and won't return until January 11, 2021.
Thanks to a generous donor, an Air Scrubber Advanced air purifying
system is being installed this summer on campus. This is part of our effort to ensure staff and student safety as we plan our return to in-person instruction.
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