Students Tulpehocken Junior-Senior High School began learning virtually Thursday, Nov. 19, after COVID-19 cases at the building forced its closure, a message on the Tulpehocken School District's Facebook page states.

The message, posted Wednesday, Nov. 18, and credited to Superintendent Andrew Netznik, said the district was notified earlier in the day of confirmed COVID-19 cases at the junior-senior high school. Details about the cases, including whether they involved students or staff, was not provided.

"Based on contact tracing, we believe that the impact to the operations of the building is significant enough that we will need to move the junior-senior high school to a virtual model of instruction starting tomorrow through next week," the message read.

Tulpehocken students who attend Berks Career and Technology Center will also be moved to virtual learning while the junior-senior high school is operating remotely.

All extracurricular activities and sports have been canceled through Dec. 6.

Following the district's Thanksgiving break, the entire school district will return to classes virtually for four days, the message said. Both elementary and secondary students will take part in remote lessons from Dec. 1 through Dec. 4.

"Moving the week of Dec. 1 to a virtual model will allow us the opportunity to assess the COVID situation following the Thanksgiving holiday," Netznik's message read. "While I realize that this is not the ideal situation, we are trying to take steps proactively so that a long-term virtual model may be avoided."

The message said that information was emailed to families about schedules and other protocols for the temporary shift to virtual learning. That information can also be found on the district's website at tulpehocken.org.

Students in Tulpehocken have been learning through a hybrid model since the beginning of the school year.

Elementary students attended full-day classes in-person four days a week, learning virtually on Wednesdays.

Secondary students had half-day classes in person four days a week until Sept. 21, when in-person days were extended to full days.

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