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Cedar Rapids Community School District explains change to start allowing volunteers and visitors

Published: Dec. 10, 2021 at 5:29 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -The Cedar Rapids Community School District will allow volunteers and visitors when classes resume after winter break on January 3rd. The district stopped allowing stopped allowing visitors and volunteers at its elementary buildings early this school year as part of Covid protocols.

Health Services Coordinator Sandy Byard says the reasoning behind the change is all students’ ages five and up will have had the chance to get vaccinated by then, plus adults would have had the chance to get a booster shot.

She adds that their Covid mitigation strategies are staying the same. Volunteers and visitors will have to follow the district’s mask guidelines.

The district is still encouraging social distancing. Byard notes the district has increased ventilation in all of its school buildings. She says volunteers are needed, especially at the elementary level to work with students.

“Allowing those schools that have limited staff available to do the things that the teachers and other secretaries don’t have time to do,” said Byard. “Where they’re actually able to do some small group work with some kids in classrooms, they’re able to you know make copies and cut out art projects and get things ready for teachers to use for those schools. Our volunteers particularly in our elementary are really important during the school day.”

Byard says the district’s positivity rate has never gone above one percent during this school year. She says, in terms of getting rid of the mask mandate, they are looking at county data and vaccination rates. She adds that those numbers will drive if they further loosening mitigation measures.

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