Wapato and Naches Valley school districts will join other public schools in Yakima County in starting the school year with remote learning.
Wapato students can expect to learn remotely through at least Nov. 9, the district said in a statement Tuesday. Naches Valley will assess local COVID-19 trends weekly to determine when it is safe to return to campus partially or in full, according to a Monday statement.
The decisions came after school board members reviewed superintendent recommendations. Each district said the remote learning plan for the fall would include improvements from spring and some small groups of high-needs students might be brought on campus for in-person learning.
Last week, Yakima Health District and the state recommended that schools in Yakima County begin the school year remotely due to high risk to COVID-19 in the community. All but four local public school districts announced at the time that learning would begin remotely as a result. Sunnyside, Wapato, Naches Valley and Mt. Adams school districts were awaiting school board decisions, leaving final plans for the fall for Sunnyside and Mt. Adams to be determined. Mt. Adams administrators have said remote learning is highly likely.
Meanwhile, Yakima’s largest private schools — La Salle High School, St. Joseph Marquette Catholic School and Christ the Teacher Catholic School — all have plans for in-person learning following social distancing protocols this fall.