Health district ‘strongly recommending’ distance learning for all Yakima County schools

YAKIMA, Wash. – The Yakima Health District is strongly recommending that all Yakima County schools implement a distance learning-only model this school year.

“While Yakima County continues to see great improvement in our COVID-19 cases, we still have one of the highest rates of COVID-19 transmission in the state,” the health district said in a news release Wednesday.

The Washington State Department of Health recommends distance learning for counties with high COVID-19 activity which is defined as having more than 75 cases per 100,000 residents every 14 days. Currently, positive case counts in Yakima County are at over 338.7 cases per 100,000 residents within the past 14 days — an incidence rate more than 3 times that threshold.

“As a community, we must continue to follow the public health recommendations so we can facilitate a safe learning environment for students and teachers,” the health district said. “Collectively, we can continue to slow the spread of COVID-19.”

The health district said all school districts in Yakima County will be communicating with families on what their specific distance learning plan is for their area. Any questions related to the logistics of the plan at the school level should be directed to the school districts.