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A sixth-grade class in the Amphitheater Unified School District will shift to remote learning until Aug. 19 after reported cases of COVID-19 in the class, Principal Jason Weaver announced in a letter to families on Tuesday.

Amphi students returned to school on Aug. 5 during a wave of COVID-19 cases. Most school districts in Pima County, including Amphi, decided not to require masks, which would be a violation of state law. District officials are only encouraging mask-wearing.

In the letter, Weaver said the district provided contact tracing information to the Pima County Health Department for anyone in the Harelson Elementary School class. Close contacts are defined as anyone who was within six feet of an infected person or within three feet if one of the contacts was wearing a mask for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.

As of Wednesday, the school district reported nearly 30 cases district-wide - six cases among teachers and 21 students - with three active cases at Harelson Elementary. Since July 20, the health department has received reports of 386 COVID-19 cases and 19 outbreaks across Pima County school districts.

The sixth-grade class will receive remote instruction from a certified teacher who has worked at the school for many years and has taught for Amphi Academy Online, according to Michelle Valenzuela, director of Communications.

“During this time and as we move forward during this year, I encourage all of us to provide support and strength to one another,” said Weaver. “I am grateful to my staff and the wider Harelson community for their patience, understanding and dedication to our students.”          

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