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November 17, 2020

Archdiocese of Philadelphia high schools to begin all-remote learning after city implements new COVID-19 restrictions

Parish and regional elementary schools in the city can continue with in-person instruction

Education Coronavirus
archdiocese of philadelphia high schools Thom Carroll/For PhillyVoice

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia said that it is hopeful that its eight city-based high schools can return to in-person instruction in January.

In the wake of new citywide restrictions to slow the spread of the coronavirus, all eight Archdiocese of Philadelphia high schools located within the city will revert to online-only instruction starting next Monday.

All in-person school activities and athletic events in Philly will be suspended, but parish and regional elementary schools across the city can continue with in-person learning, the Archdiocese announced Monday.

The Archdiocese said that it is hopeful that its eight Philly-based high schools can return to in-person instruction in January.

“The Archdiocese recognizes the essential need to be nimble in the face of the ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic landscape,” the Archdiocese said in a statement. “As a result, flexibility is the hallmark of each school plan. Senior administrators are constantly monitoring developments and in constant contact with local health departments in order to adjust school plans accordingly.”

The Archdiocese’s announcement comes after city officials issued sweeping new COVID-19 restrictions on Monday that will remain in place through the rest of 2020.

Among the new mandates, high schools must conduct virtual learning only. Elementary and middle schools will be permitted to have in-person instruction, depending on the district and school guidelines. School sports must all be shut down.

The new restrictions come as Philly recorded a three-day-total of 2,564 new coronavirus infections on Monday, increasing the citywide total to 54,607. Last week, Philadelphia averaged 657 cases per day, which was a record for the city. A record of more than 1,100 additional infections were reported in Philly last Friday.

After Montgomery County ordered all public and private K-12 schools to hold online-only instruction for two weeks to prevent an uptick in COVID-19 cases over the Thanksgiving holiday, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia said that all of its schools in the county will begin online-only learning next Monday

All in-person schools activities and athletic events have been suspended, and the Archdiocese hopes to resume in-person learning by Dec. 7.

In-person instruction will continue for all Archdiocesan schools in Bucks, Chester, and Delaware counties.

Last week, the School District of Philadelphia postponed indefinitely its plans to revive in-person instruction for some students initially slated to return later this month.

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