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This article is free to all readers because it includes information important to public safety and health in our community.

The Cole County R-5 School District in Eugene is switching to virtual learning for all grades Friday due to a staffing shortage.

In-person classes are scheduled to resume Nov. 16, but virtual learning may be extended again if needed, according to information on the district's website.

Grades 7-12 switched to virtual learning Monday due to a staffing shortage and concerns about potential COVID-19 spread.

As of Tuesday, the district had three active staff cases and five active student cases, Burrow said. She said she did not know how many close contacts these cases resulted in.

On Tuesday, she said the number of quarantines and active cases in the elementary school was low.

As of Thursday, the district's website listed one junior high/high school case, no elementary cases and two staff cases.

Unlike the school closure in the spring, teachers and students are prepared for virtual learning, and they will continue the same lessons instead of doing reviews. The district is providing Chromebooks to students, and teachers will primarily use Google Classroom.

Teachers will contact all students about when assignments will start and how they will be assigned. The drop-box at the high school entrance is available for any students who wish to submit paper assignments.

WiFi access will be available 9 a.m.-2 p.m. and 4-9 p.m. in the high school parking lots close to the building perimeter in the front of the building and 9 a.m.-9 p.m. in the back of the building. The district's technology department is working to activate hotspots in other locations throughout the district, according to the district's website.

If you do not have a device or WiFi, the district can also provide a desktop computer with a thumb drive with assignments upon request.

Families can pick up breakfast and lunch by request. To order meals, call Nina Kilson at 573-498-4023 or email [email protected]. The deadline to sign up is noon Friday. A week of meals will be available for pickup at the high school front entrance from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Nov. 2 and Nov. 9.

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