All-In Learning

Matrix for All-In Learning

Approved by the Board of Education on November 18, 2020

Over the past month, Upper Arlington Schools has been working closely with a Medical Advisory Team to watch both Upper Arlington health data as well as what’s happening in the county and around the state. Their analysis is informed by localized data from within the Upper Arlington attendance area through a pilot project with the Ohio State University College of Public Health. The COVID-19 Analytics and Targeted Surveillance (CATS) project provides local school districts with more specific data on what is happening within a school district’s attendance area. This gives our district yet another layer of information that will help the Upper Arlington Board of Education make the best decisions possible as we move forward. 


The district’s Medical Advisory Team — made up of local experts in public health and infectious diseases — has been helping the district develop the following draft matrix for all-in learning. If approved by the Upper Arlington Board of Education, this matrix would be used to guide when the school district would transition into an all-in learning model for K-12 students in the school-based pathway. 


The Board of Education approved this matrix on November 18, 2020. Upper Arlington Schools and the Medical Advisory Team will continue to monitor preliminary local health data and adjust their recommendations based on updated data.


The district is continuing to work with the Medical Advisory Team to develop other matrices that would guide other potential transitions.




Matrix


This matrix, developed with local experts on the Medical Advisory Team, reflects the thresholds for Upper Arlington Schools and regional indicators that would trigger a transition to all-in learning.


Upper Arlington Case Rate

The Upper Arlington case rate reflects the number of COVID-19 cases in the Upper Arlington Schools attendance area per 100,000 population. The case rate allows us to compare COVID-19 cases within our attendance boundaries to different populations such as Franklin County and school districts of different sizes in our area. This is a rate — it is NOT the number of cases in the district. A case rate of 100 or higher per 100,000 population is considered high incidence by the Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


When first reported, the Upper Arlington case rate reflects preliminary data from the most recent two week period. As additional data become available from that time frame, the case rate is likely to increase to some degree. 


The Upper Arlington case rate is updated weekly and published on our COVID-19 dashboard.

 

School-age case volume by school level

Through our partnership with the Ohio State University College of Public Health, the CATS data system allows us to look at COVID-19 case numbers specifically among school-age children by school level — elementary, middle and high school — living within the Upper Arlington Schools attendance area. This data may not reflect the number of active confirmed COVID-19 cases in our school district as reported on our online dashboard, which also includes staff cases in the totals. Additionally, the school-age case data from the CATS system may include cases among students who live in Upper Arlington but do not attend Upper Arlington Schools.

Student and Staff Illness Data

Three data points will inform the Student and Staff Illness indicator. The first is student absences due to illness, tracked through the CATS system using data from our student information system (PowerSchool). The second is staff absences due to illness, tracked through the CATS system using data from our staff absence management system (Frontline). The third is student clinic visits due to influenza or COVID-like symptoms, tracked through the CATS system using data from our school health clinics’ charting system (Frontline). 


Each of these indicators will be considered met if the numbers are at or below a historical baseline (“normality”).


COVID-19 Mitigation Measures

At the recommendation of the experts on the Medical Advisory Team, Upper Arlington Schools will be implementing procedures to track an overall level of proper mask usage (covering the nose, mouth and chin) among students and staff members during the school day. The district will also ensure that all contact tracing continues to be completed within 24 hours of notification of a confirmed COVID-19 case, and that all cleaning and disinfecting protocols continue to be followed throughout our school buildings and offices.


In addition, the district will be ensuring that all students and staff members observe physical distancing to the greatest extent possible depending on the learning model. In hybrid learning, students and staff members maintain at least 6 feet of physical distance. In all-in learning, the goal would be 3 feet of physical distance, but that cannot be guaranteed in all learning spaces. As recommended by the Medical Advisory Team, in all-in learning, the district will creatively use space to maintain 6 feet of physical distancing during meal times, when students are not wearing facial coverings.


Franklin County Alert Status (Ohio Public Health Advisory System)

An additional data point to consider is the alert status for Franklin County in the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. This allows our district to look at the regional context of the current COVID-19 situation in our surrounding area. 


The advisory system has four levels that indicate the severity of the COVID-19 situation within a county — Yellow (Level 1), for active exposure and spread; Orange (Level 2), increased exposure and spread; Red (Level 3), very high exposure and spread; and Purple (Level 4), severe exposure and spread. Please see the Ohio Public Health Advisory System website for additional information about the alert levels and state guidance on response. 


The county’s alert status is updated weekly on Thursdays and can be monitored on our COVID-19 dashboard.


Transition to All-In Learning

All five indicators on Upper Arlington Schools draft matrix would need to be met for two consecutive weeks in order to trigger a transition to all-in learning. After two weeks of data meeting the thresholds for these indicators, Upper Arlington Schools would implement a two-week transition period for a return to all-in learning. Data will continue to be evaluated during the two-week transition period in order to ensure that the initial two weeks of data remain within the thresholds and the subsequent two weeks of data continue to trend in the “right” direction.


The all-in learning model would have basically all of the same health and safety protocols currently observed within our schools in the hybrid learning model. The biggest change would be having less than 6 feet of physical distancing in all-in learning. The goal would be 3 feet, but that cannot be guaranteed in all learning spaces. The exception would be meal time, when 6 feet of physical distancing must be maintained. 


The physical distancing change is significant because 6 feet is the distance considered ideal by the American Academy of Pediatrics, and it’s also the threshold for “exposure” and quarantine requirements from health officials. Anyone who was within 6 feet of a COVID-19 infected person with or without a face mask for at least 15 minutes cumulative over the course of a day is considered a close contact and must be quarantined for 14 days after the last/most recent contact with the individual when they were infectious.


As a result, in all-in learning, with less than 6 feet of physical distancing, we expect to see an increase in the number of students and staff members who must quarantine for 14 days.

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