COVID Impact

A spreadsheet viewed by the Laconia School Board shows the number of students in the city's school system who are now in quarantine because of COVID-19.

LACONIA — The majority of the city’s public school students will continue to attend school under a hybrid schedule. But because some school staff members or students have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has, there are “some pockets” within the school system which have had to switch to full remote learning, Superintendent Steve Tucker told the School Board.

In an overview of COVID’s impact on the schools, Tucker told the board that individual grades at each of the city’s three elementary schools have had to pivot to remote learning.

Those classes are:

• Woodland Heights, Grade 2.

• Pleasant Street School, Grade 5.

• Elm Street School, Grade 4.

He said 18 Woodland Heights staff members were in quarantine due to the pandemic. The board was also given an overview of the numbers of students who are in quarantine, with significantly higher numbers among students at Woodland Heights School and Laconia High School. With approximately 550 students, Laconia High is the largest school in the system.

Assistant Superintendent Amy Hinds told the board that latest statistics show minimal transmission of the virus in the schools, meaning there are no or only sporadic cases, with no evidence of transmission within the school itself.

Absenteeism of late has ranged from 3 percent to 24 percent, with the higher percentage being at the high school. But Tucker cautioned that the absenteeism figure for the upper grades is skewed toward the high side because attendance at the high school is taken at each class, while it is taken only once at the lower grades.

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