COVID-19 cases top 600 in Cumberland County, triggering alternate learning plan for some students

Regional News

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Cumberland County Schools announced Tuesday that a portion of their student body will learn remotely after a spike in COVID-19 cases.

The district’s plan says that should the county-wide number of active cases go above 607, Pre-K through 2nd grade would attend in-person learning, and grades 3-12 would go remote. The county reached that benchmark on Tuesday, forcing the schools to activate a “Red Zone” plan effective Jan. 6.

According to the school’s plan approved by the state last July:


  • Will attend classes in person on a regular schedule
  • Pre-K through 2nd grade students must attend in person or absences will be accumulated.

Grades 3-12

  • Will begin remote learning tomorrow, January 6th through Friday, January 8th *with exceptions for grades 9-12 (see below)

Grades 9-12

  • Due to the nature of scheduling and classes looking different at the high school level with the start of a new semester, students in grades will report to school in person, alternating days on Wed. Jan 6th and Thurs. Jan 7th, with all students 9-12 being remote on Friday, Jan 8th.
  • Students with last names A through K:
  • -Attend in person Wed. Jan. 6th
  • -Remote learning Thurs. Jan. 7th & 8th
  • Students with last names L through Z:
  • -Remote learning Wed. Jan. 6th & 8th
  • -Attend in person Thurs. Jan. 7th

Phoenix Campus Families will receive a letter today with more information, the school said.

“Because 3-12 is remote, this does not mean that our buildings are unsafe for Pre-K through 2nd grade students to be present.  This minimizes the number of students in the building.  This also allows our youngest learners to have an opportunity to receive the academic support they so critically need at such a young age,” the district said in a post on social media.

Bus transportation will run on a regular schedule for students attending in person classes.

If the active cases of the coronavirus remain above 607 based on Friday’s (Jan. 8th) report from the TN Department of Health, ALL students in grades 3-12 will continue remote learning the following week. Pre-K through 2nd grade will continue in person.

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