FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
UPDATE Positive COVID-19 Cases at Schoenbar Middle School and Ketchikan High School
February 17, 2021
(Ketchikan, Alaska) – Over the last few days, Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District was notified of several positive COVID-19 cases between Ketchikan High School and Schoenbar Middle School. As indicated by information gathered through contact tracing investigations to date, we believe these cases to be the result of known positives, and close contacts have been identified and asked to quarantine.
Because both schools were operating in the District’s Medium Risk 50% Capacity plan, increased social distancing and smaller student cohorts resulted in fewer staff and students being identified as close contacts and having to quarantine. With guidance from Public Health, the District was able to limit closures of Ketchikan High School and will be reopening Schoenbar Middle School for on-site learning tomorrow, Thursday, February 18th.
We strongly encourage students, staff, parents, and the community to assist us in limiting exposure to others by completing the full quarantine period as directed by Public Health, isolating and getting tested if you experience any symptoms, and maintaining recommended health and safety protocols to the greatest extent possible. These strategies, in addition to getting vaccinated, will help the District be able to finish out the school year with as much on-site learning as possible.
We appreciate all the efforts of our staff, parents, and students during this time. A special thank you to our District Nurse, Principals, and Public Health for the extra time taken to ensure our schools are safe and healthy.
Katie Parrott, Acting Superintendent
Ahead of Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District's FY22 budget completion and approval, the district is seeking input from students, staff, parents, and community members.
Please see the survey below. NOTE: If you are unable to see the survey, you may go to the Budget Survey directly.
We are currently at COVID Medium Risk Level for the District.
Please note that the district risk level label does not necessarily follow the EOC risk level label.
February 4, 2021
The Ketchikan EOC has raised our community's risk level to Level 3. In response, our district has moved to District Medium Risk Level. Please contact your school for their respective plan.
Medium Risk Plans by School
Positive COVID-19 Case at Tongass School of Arts and Sciences Annex
February 9, 2021
(Ketchikan, Alaska) – Today we were notified that a member of the Tongass School of Arts & Sciences family tested positive for COVID-19. This individual self-isolated after being informed of being a close contact, was later tested and received a positive result. Contact tracing is now taking place by Public Health. We are working closely with the Ketchikan EOC and Public Health to respond, and are taking all needed precautions to protect the health of our community. This includes assisting with identifying potential close contacts.
Each situation calls for different protocols. Due to the nature of this case, we will take the following steps:
- Principal will notify school staff and parents.
- Tongass School’s Fairview Annex located at the First Assembly of God church will be closed immediately, and will remain closed for a minimum of 24 hours. This will take place Tuesday, February 9th through Wednesday, February 10th, with a plan to return to on-site operations on Thursday, February 11th. Any and all activities and before and after school programs at the annex location will be cancelled.
- Tongass School’s main facility will remain open and operational as normal.
- Ketchikan Pest Control will disinfect the annex location.
- Custodial workers will conduct a deep cleaning of the building.
- Updates to the public will go out as we receive updated information in collaboration with Public Health.
We appreciate everyone’s cooperation while we prepare our school for re-opening. We strongly encourage the Ketchikan community to take all precautions seriously, to social distance, wash hands, and stay home if you are feeling ill. Our community is currently experiencing an increase in cases, and we must do everything possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our schools and community.
Beth Lougee, Superintendent
IS YOUR CHILD STRUGGLING IN SCHOOL?
ARE YOU CONCERNED ABOUT YOUR CHILD’S LIKELIHOOD OF SUCCESS ONCE THEY BEGIN SCHOOL?
The Ketchikan School District is currently conducting a CHILD FIND for children ages 3-21 who may be eligible for special education services.
Special Education covers a wide range of disability categories under which students may qualify for additional services in the school setting. Categories include:
- Specific Learning Disability
- Developmentally Delayed
- Emotional Disturbed
- Other Health Impaired
- Hearing Impairment
- Deafness/Blind Deafness
- Orthopedic Impairment
- Speech/Language Impaired Autism
- Visual Impairment
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Intellectual Disability
- Multiple Disabilities
KGBSD Special Education Information 2021
Please contact your building principal or classroom teacher for more information.
The Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District is currently conducting a community-wide Child Find for children ages 3-21 who may be eligible for free special education services.
PRESCHOOL APPLICATIONS for the 2020-2021 school year will be accepted starting on January, 25th 2021.
Please contact your preferred school for information regarding Child Find and/or Preschool Screening.
Screening will take place Feb 22 -March 5 2021
For additional information, please go to our Spring 2021 PreK Screening page.
Sign up for Text Alerts
Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District uses texting capabilities through SchoolMessenger, the same system that sends out the district’s automated phone calls and emails. This service is not intended to replace our existing means of communication- rather it will enhance them.
The district will only use the service to provide information that is timely and relevant.
In order to participate in the new service you must indicate your willingness to receive text messages to your phone. The process is simple and only takes a few seconds to complete.
Simply text any one of the following words to the number 67587: subscribe, optin, yes
You’ll know you were successful if you receive the following reply message:You are registered for SchoolMessenger notifications. Reply STOP to quit, HELP for help.
*NOTE: In addition to performing the opt-in process above you’ll want to ensure that the district has your wireless number(s) in our student information database. If you haven’t already provided that information to your school, do so.
Alaska Smart Start 2020
The Department of Education and Early Development (DEED), in partnership with the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS), developed guidance to support planning and strategies for reopening schools. ‘Alaska Smart Start 2020’ framework for K-12 schools provides a tiered approach based on COVID-19 pandemic risk levels per community. School districts and communities will work together to develop clear, actionable steps that are necessary for teaching and learning to continue throughout the 2020-2021 school year. These health parameters provide a basis for plans that are specific, actionable, and broad enough to be adaptable.
Alaska Smart Start 2020 is built upon the guidance and recommendations of health officials and collaborative conversations with education stakeholders; it is aligned to the reopening guidelines that have been provided by our state and federal leaders; and it is designed to help districts prioritize the health and safety of students and teachers as they deliver instruction for the 2020-2021 school year.