Coatesville Area School District Ends COVID-19 Contact Tracing; Board Seeks to Close $9.3 Million Budget Gap | Community News

The Coatesville Area School District will no longer conduct contact tracing in accordance with its updated health and safety plan, approved by the board at the Jan. 25 meeting.

Superintendent Tomás Hanna said the decision to end contact tracing was based on recent guidance from the Chester County Health Department.

Administration recommends that all students, staff, and visitors continue to follow masking guidelines in all district buildings and on school transportation. Students and staff who test positive for COVID-19 are asked to self-isolate for a period of five days from the date of onset of their symptoms before returning to school. According to Hanna, the district administration will continue to review local transmission rates and make updated recommendations to the council as needed.

The district continues to manage its $9.3 million budget gap for the 2022-23 school year. The $9.3 million total does not include salary or benefit increases, charter school costs, regular or special education costs, or contract escalations for the coming year. .

Hanna presented options to the council on how the district could work to close its budget gap.

Options include exploring how the district can use emergency relief funds for elementary and secondary schools to offset expenses directly related to COVID-19 relief and evaluating how this can reduce programming and personnel costs. Hanna stressed that if the district were to make any program or staff reductions, it would aim to make choices that will have the least direct impact on Coatesville students.

“If we find areas in staffing that we can reduce to help balance the budget, first we need to weigh those options with the impact on student achievement,” Hanna said.

The next board meeting will be at 6 p.m. on February 8.

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