3 Mass. districts delay in-person learning due to lack of air purifiers, new positive COVID-19 case

“We understand this is an inconvenience and may cause significant scheduling issues for families."

–Jessica Rinaldi / The Boston Globe, File

A delay in the delivery of air purifiers in a couple school districts and a positive COVID-19 case in a high school student in another has forced three Massachusetts school districts to delay in-person learning for some students.

In Lowell and Easton, it was an issue with the national supply chain of air purifiers that led to the decision to have some students learn remotely.

In Lowell, the district has 128 air purifiers on hand, and students in preschool and kindergarten will begin in-person learning on Monday. In addition, some attending therapeutic and special education schools began in-person learning on Thursday. Students in grades 1-12 who aren’t in special education will begin remotely without a date set on when in-person learning will begin, a letter from the district to families said.

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For Easton, pre-K through fifth grade will begin their hybrid schedule as planned, but students in grades six through 12 will be fully remote from Thursday through next Wednesday, Sept. 23. The in-person hybrid will begin with cohort B for these students next Thursday, the 24th, according to a letter from the district.

“We understand this is an inconvenience and may cause significant scheduling issues for families,” the letter released on Monday said. “However, we received this information today and wanted to communicate the details as soon as possible for your planning purposes.”

In Winchester, a high school student tested positive for COVID-19, and students in the BB cohort in those grade levels will be doing remote schooling for Thursday and Friday. Students outside the high school that belong to the same cohort weren’t affected, school Superintendent Judith Evans said on Twitter. High school students in the other cohort, AA, are still scheduled to report to classes on Monday as planned, high school Principal Dennis Mahoney said.


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