Staffing shortages prompt PPS to switch 12 schools to remote classes Monday
Staffing shortages caused by increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases will force 12 schools in the Pittsburgh Public Schools district to transition to remote classes Monday, district officials announced Sunday night.
The decision came hours after the district initially announced plans to hold in-person classes in all buildings Monday when students and staff return from the December holiday break.
District officials also cautioned Sunday that announcements of building closures "may come swiftly" due to increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases and the subsequent impact on staffing.
Schools affected Monday include:
- Allegheny PreK-5
- Carrick High School
- Crescent Early Childhood Center
- Greenfield PreK-8
- Liberty PreK-5
- Lincoln PreK-5
- Montessori PreK-5
- Morrow Prek-8
- Perry High School
- Phillips PreK-5
- Weil PreK-5
- Whittier PreK-5.
Grab and Go meal service will be available for students from 9 a.m.-noon in the cafeteria of each affected school. The district said it plans to reopen those buildings for classes Tuesday.
In its initial statement Sunday, district officials said they will require universal masking indoors and physical distancing when students and staff return to buildings, and they will continue to support COVID-19 testing and vaccinations.
The district also will continue to monitor the number of individual cases of COVID-19 within individual schools. Officials warned families and students that announcements of building closures and a return to virtual instruction "may come swiftly as more positive cases are reported and staff call-offs roll in."
The district said it would rely on building-closure guidelines to assess the number of positive cases in a facility within 14 days and the impact of staffing shortages. Families and students may monitor the number of positive cases at individual buildings within a 14-day period and their potential effect on closures at www.pghschools.org/closureguidelines.
Also Sunday, the district announced plans to hold a vaccination blitz for PPS families in conjunction with UPMC on Saturday, Jan. 8 at five locations around the city.
First and second doses of vaccine, as well as booster shots, will be offered. Children ages 5-11 can receive the Pfizer pediatric vaccine. Students 12 and older may receive the Pfizer vaccine, and adult family members may receive the Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines.
Staff and families may learn more and register for the vaccination blitz at
www.pghschools.org/backandvaxxed. Transportation will be available to vaccination locations, which include:
- Pittsburgh Langley (Cafeteria), 9-11 a.m., 2940 Sheraden Blvd.
- Pittsburgh Lincoln (Cafeteria), 9-11 a.m., 328 Lincoln Ave.
- Pittsburgh Morrow (Gym), 1-3 p.m., 3530 Fleming Ave.
- Pittsburgh Weil (Cafeteria), 1-3 p.m., 2250 Centre Ave.
- UPMC South Side, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., 2000 Mary St.