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UPDATE: WVDE map will not be updated until 2021

Students in W.Va. are on holiday break this week
Published: Sep. 12, 2020 at 10:22 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va (WTAP) - UPDATE: 12/26/20

There is no update to the West Virginia Department of Education map this Saturday because students in West Virginia are on holiday break.

Officials say the map won’t be updated again until January 2nd, 2021, even if a county turns red.

The map was last updated on Christmas Eve, with 49 of West Virginia’s 55 counties in either red or orange. That means if students were suppose to be in school this week, nearly all of them would be learning virtually.

UPDATE: 12/19/20

Nearly half of West Virginia is red on this week’s update to the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map, including many counties in our viewing area.

Wood, Pleasants, Jackson, Ritchie, and Doddridge Counties are red. That means no in-person learning or extracurriculars for students in those counties.

Across the state their are 25 red counties and another 22 are in the next highest tier, orange. That means of West Virginia’s 55 counties, there are only eight counties where in-person learning is even possible. On top of this, two gold counties have opted into full virtual learning.

Wirt County is among the many orange counties in the state. Under the orange color code, students must learn remotely and they cannot compete in sports competitions. However, student athletes can condition. That said, winter sports have been delayed until January 11th, 2021 in West Virginia.

Calhoun County is one of four gold counties this week. Under gold, it’s up to local health and school officials to decide if it’s safe for students to attend class in-person and officials in Calhoun County have decided that students will learn virtually for this week.

Roane County is among just three counties across all of West Virginia to be assigned the second lowest tier, yellow, this week.

McDowell County is the only county in the lowest tier, green.

Students in green and yellow counties can attend school in-person and attend extracurricular activities.

UPDATE: 12/12/20

More than half of West Virginia counties are either orange or red on this week’s school-alert-system map, including most of the Mid-Ohio Valley.

Pleasants County moved up from gold to orange just two weeks after the St. Marys Blue Devils became the default winners of the Class A football tournament. Under the orange tier, schools are ineligible to compete in extracurricular competitions.

Students also cannot attend school in-person, meaning the Blue Devils will be learning from home this week.

Just south in Wood County, students will remain at home this week. Though the county dropped from red to orange, not much will change for students. The only major change will be that student athletes can condition again.

That said, all high school winter sports have been pushed back until January 11th, 2021 in West Virginia.

Wirt County is still red on this week’s map, meaning students in the county are still unable to learn in-person or participate in any extracurriculars.

Ritchie County is also red this week, having now moved up a tier from orange last week.

Wirt and Ritchie both had infection rates above 55 cases per 100,000 people on the county alert map on Saturday. That’s more than double the necessary infection rate to turn red.

UPDATE: 12/5/2020

Wirt County and Wood County are among a dozen counties in West Virginia to either reach or remain in the red zone on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map this week.

Students in red counties cannot learn in-person or participate in any extracurricular activities. That means students in Wood County Schools will continue to learn remotely for the week of December 7th.

Students in Ritchie County will also be learning remotely this week, as their county is in the second highest tier orange. The only major difference between the red and orange tiers for students is that student athletes can condition.

Most other counties in our area, including Pleasants County, are gold this week. The middle tier, gold allows for in-person learning as long as local health and school officials feel that is the best way to move forward.

Extracurriculars are allowed in gold counties, but competitions must be held in-county or with students in other gold counties. However, all winter high school sports have already been pushed back by state officials until January 11th 2021.

UPDATE: 11/28/20

Two area counties have turned red on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map. Students in Ritchie County and Wirt County are not eligible to learn in-person or to participate in any extracurricular activities because of their red status.

Wood County reverted from red to orange this week, changing very little for students in the county. Students will still be learning from home, but student athletes can now condition.

Jackson County saw a drastic change on this week’s map, reverting from fifth-tier red all the way down to second-tier yellow. Students in Jackson County can now learn in-person and participate in extracurriculars.

Pleasants County and Calhoun County are also yellow this week.

The only county in our area to be green this week is Roane County. Green being the lowest tier, students there are cleared to play sports and to learn in-person with minimal restrictions.

Though students in gold, yellow and green counties can return to in-person learning this coming week, Governor Jim Justice has called for all students to learn remotely until at least this coming Thursday.

UPDATE: 11/21/20:

Wood County has turned red on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map.

Red is the highest tier on the map and it means students cannot learn in-person or participate in any extracurricular activities.

Wood County joins Jackson County as the second in our area to turn red in the last two weeks. This is the second week in a row Jackson County has been red on the school-alert-system map.

To reach the red category, a county must have 25 or more cases per 100,000 people or a positive test rate above 8 percent.

Wirt County and Ritchie County are both in the next highest tier, orange. Students cannot learn in-person in orange counties, nor can they participate in extracurricular competitions. Student athletes, however, are allowed to condition.

Pleasants County and Calhoun County are yellow on this week’s map, meaning students in those counties can learn in-person and compete in extracurricular competitions.

Roane County and Doddridge County are green this week. Being the lowest tier, green has the least amount of restrictions for students and school staff to follow. Students can learn in-person and participate in extracurricular competitions in green counties.

UPDATE 11/15/20:

Wood County students will remain at home this week, as the county failed to improve on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map.

Spending a second week under the fourth highest tier, orange, Wood County students are unable to learn in-person or participate in any sports competitions. That means no playoffs for Parkersburg High or Williamstown. You can read more about that, by clicking here.

On a related note, Pleasants County improved on this week’s map, turning from tier-3 gold to tier-2 yellow. Students in yellow counties can learn in-person and participate in extracurriculars with other yellow and even green counties. The improvement didn’t end up mattering much for the St. Marys Blue Devils because their opponents for this week were ineligible to play, meaning St. Mary’s will move on in the state competition.

Ritchie County was also yellow on this week’s map.

Jackson County entered the highest tier, red, on this week’s map. Students cannot participate in any extracurricular activities, nor can they learn in-person.

Wirt, Roane, Calhoun, Gilmer, and Doddridge counties were all green this week, and are cleared for both in-person learning and extracurricular competition.

UPDATE 11/7/20: Wood County students will be learning from home this week as the county turns orange, the fourth highest category, on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map.

Under the orange color code, state officialS require students to learn remotely, and extracurricular competitions are suspended.

Wood County Schools released a plan for students to learn virtually on Saturday, which you can read about here.

Jackson County is also orange on this week’s map, forcing more area students to learn from home.

Pleasants County and Wirt County are in the next highest category under orange, gold. In gold counties, it is up to local health and education officials to decide if it’s still safe to have students learn in-person. However, state guidelines say extracurricular competitions can only happen in-county or in other gold counties.

Ritchie County is in the second lowest tier, yellow. Students there can still participate in sports competitions with green and yellow counties. They are also free to learn in-person.

Roane County, Calhoun County, and Doddridge County are all green this week. Students can learn in-person and compete in extracurriculars in green counties.

UPDATE: 10/31/20

After a week spent in the clear, Wood County has risen to the gold tier once again on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map.

The gold color code is the center tier, which allows local school and health officials to decide whether or not in person learning is still safe, but forces other changes. Students in gold colored counties can only compete in extracurricular competitions in-county or with students from other gold counties. One of the biggest high school football rivalry games in the country is this Friday between Parkersburg High School and Parkersburg South High School. As both teams are in the same gold county, the color change should not affect team eligibility.

As for any changes to learning, a spokesperson for Wood County Schools told us the district won’t be changing how students learn based on this week’s color change.

Jackson and Tyler counties are also gold on this week’s map, but much of the Mid-Ohio Valley is yellow. Pleasants, Wirt, Ritchie and Roane counties are all in tier two on this week’s map. While the yellow tier does cause some changes, they are less drastic than higher tiers.

Wirt County was in the tier above gold last week, orange. In the orange category, students aren’t able to attend school in-person, nor can they compete in extracurriculars. As the county turns yellow, students could go back to learning in-person and competing in sports.

Calhoun County and Doddridge County are green (the lowest tier) on this week’s map. Green and yellow counties can compete with one another in extracurriculars.

There is only one county in the highest tier on the state’s map this week; Mingo County. Students in red counties cannot attend class in-person nor can they participate in extracurricular activities.

UPDATE: 10/24/20

Wood County has returned to green on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map after a week under the stricter gold level. Not much changed for Wood County students during their week under the gold code, as the school district had already been operating under a hybrid in-person and remote learning system. The major change came for students involved in sports. All three Wood County public high schools had to reschedule football games as a result of their color change last week, which only allowed them to compete with other gold counties. This week, all three are free to compete with schools in green and yellow counties. However, there will likely be changes, as Parkersburg High School and Williamstown High School were both slated to play schools that are in gold counties on this week’s map.

Several other Mid-Ohio Valley counties are in the green or yellow categories this week. They include: Pleasants (green), Ritchie (yellow), Roane (yellow), and Calhoun (green).

While Wood County was able to drop two tiers into the green category, neighboring Wirt County remains Orange on this week’s map. Under the orange tier, no in-person learning can take place and all extracurricular activities are suspended with the exception of some conditioning.

Jackson County and Dodridge County are both gold on this week’s map, meaning local school and health officials will have to decide if they feel students can safely attend school in-person. Extracurricular competitions like football games can only be played in-county or with other gold counties.

There is only one county under the red color code this week, Wyoming County. No in-person learning or extracurricular of any kind can continue under the red category.

UPDATE: 10/18/20

Wood County has turned gold on the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map. School and health officials in gold counties must collaborate and decide if in-person learning in feasible under current conditions. According to a spokesman for Wood County Schools, the district will continue to utilize their hybrid learning method. This method allows students to have a couple days of in-person learning in a given week, while the other three days they learn remotely.

While it’s up to school and local health officials to determine whether in-person learning is viable in gold counties, it is not up to them to determine if extracurriculars can still happen. Schools in gold counties can only compete in extracurricular activities with other schools in-county or in other gold counties. That means several football games have been changed for this coming Friday in Wood County. You can read about those here.

Wood County School officials are expected to reevaluate their hybrid learning method in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, Wirt County is orange on this week’s map. That means students there have to learn remotely and all extracurricular competitions are cancelled. Students can continue to condition for sports, though.

Across the whole state, there is only one county in the red zone this week, Doddridge. Red is the highest category for COVID-19 transmission and it carries the heftiest restrictions. All in-person learning is suspended in Doddridge County and students cannot participant in extracurriculars of any kind.

UPDATE: 10/10/20

In this week’s edition of the West Virginia Department of Education’s school-alert-system map, most of the Mid-Ohio Valley was coded in the lowest tier for COVID-19 spread, green. However, Wirt County rose to tier 2, yellow.

Students in yellow counties are still able to participate in extracurricular activities and attend class in-person. School officials are suppose to limit assemblies and mass gatherings and increase cohorting among students.

Jackson County was colored gold in last week’s update, and it remains that way this week.

Students in gold counties can only participate in extracurricular competitions in-county or with other gold counties. Local health and education officials must work together to determine whether or not in-person learning can continue in these counties.

No counties in West Virginia reached the map’s highest tier, red.

Four counties are in the second highest tier, orange, though. Students in Dodridge, Harrison, Upshur and Mingo Counties won’t be able to attend class in-person this week. They also can’t compete in afterschool competitions.

UPDATE: 10/3/2020 5:00 P.M.

The West Virginia Department of Education released this week’s update to the school-alert-system map.

No counties in the Mountain State have turned red this week, but a few did rise to the gold level, including Jackson County. Turning from yellow to gold, Jackson County health and education officials will now have to decide if students should be learning in-person or remotely. Schools in Jackson County won’t be able to compete in afterschool athletics, except with other schools also located in gold counties.

Five other counties are gold on this week’s update. They are Barbour, Berkeley, Dodridge, Kanawha, and Randolph Counties.

In the category between gold and red- Boone, Upshur, and Harrison Counties are color coded orange this week. Students in these counties will learn remotely and will not be able to compete in extracurriculars at all. They will, however, be allowed to condition for sports.

Wood, Wirt, Ritchie, Pleasants, Calhoun, and Roane counties are green on this week’s map, meaning schools in these counties can operate with minimal restrictions.

UPDATE: 9/26/2020

No counties are color-coded red in this week’s update to the West Virginia school alert system map.

There are two counties in the second worst category, orange. Those two counties are Kanawha County and Wayne County. Students at schools in these counties will have to learn remotely, but will be allowed to condition for sports. They still won’t be able to have full practices or competitions though.

Just five counties are in the third worst category, gold. Students in Fayette, Mingo, Marshall, Logan, and Summers counties will be able to learn in-person, if local health and education officials decide that’s appropriate. Schools in gold counties are only be able to compete with each other in sports.

All 48 other counties in West Virginia are colored yellow or green, meaning there are minimal restrictions for in-person learning and for competing in sports.

UPDATE 9/19/20 5:00 P.M.

The West Virginia Department of Education’s School Alert System Map has been updated. Officials from the COVID-19 Data Review Panel made three changes this week.

Cabell County was moved from gold to green as the case rate per 100,000 people has dropped below 3 percent.

Lincoln County was moved from gold to yellow because there were less than 20 aggregate cases over 14 days. Lincoln County was assessed with a 14-day average rather than a 7-day average due to the number of cases being below 20.

Pocahontas County was moved from gold to green due to the exclusion of linked and contained cases who are now recovered.

Locally, Ritchie, Pleasants, Tyler, Wood and Wirt counties remain in the green, meaning there are less than three coronavirus cases per 100,000 people on a seven day rolling average or that the positive test rate has stayed at or below three percent. Under this color code, a county school system can continue in-person learning. They are also able to continue extracurricular activities like football. Sporting events are limited to immediate family members and grandparents only.

Jackson, Roane, and Calhoun counties are yellow, meaning there are between three and 9.9 cases per 100,000 people on a seven day rolling average or the county has a positive test rate at or below four percent. Under the yellow color code, schools can continue in-person learning, but stricter mask requirements are in place and schools are encouraged to increase cohorting among students. Football teams are also cleared to continue playing.

State officials added a new color to the map this week, that being the color gold. Gold counties have between 10 and 14.9 cases per 100,000 people on a seven day rolling average, or a positive test rate at or below five percent. The three counties at the gold level as of Saturday are Logan, Ohio, and Wyoming counties. In gold counties, extracurricular competitions can only take place within the county or with other gold counties. No large assemblies are permitted at school.

Monongalia County and Boone County are the only two counties in the second worst category, orange. Orange means there are between 15 and 24.9 cases per 100,000 people in the county on a seven day rolling average. For schools, this means no in-person learning can take place. Extracurricular activities like sports practices and competitions cannot take place. However, students can work on strength and conditioning to stay in shape for when they can return to competition.

The counties seeing the most cases are Fayette, Kanawha, Mingo, and Putnam. They are colored red for 25 or more cases per 100,000 on a seven day rolling average. All learning in red counties is done remotely and extracurriculars are suspended.

West Virginia released an updated School Alert System Map Saturday just after 5 p.m.

The color coded map shows which county schools can continue or begin in-person learning. It also controls which schools can have extracurricular activities.

In the Mid-Ohio Valley, Wood, Wirt, Pleasants and Ritchie Counties are green, meaning there are less than three coronavirus cases per 100,000 people in the county. As a green county, schools can continue in-person learning and extracurricular activities can continue. Immediate family members will be allowed at sports competitions.

Dodridge County turned yellow this week, meaning in-person learning and extracurriculars can continue, but only parents or guardians will be allowed sports competitions. There are also stricter mask guidelines in place for students. Calhoun, Roane and Jackson Counties are also yellow.

Boone County has turned orange, meaning extracurricular activities will be limited to strength and conditioning only. That means Wirt County High School’s football game against Van cannot be played under state guidelines. This is the second game in three weeks to be cancelled for Wirt.

More details can be found on what each color code means can found by clicking here.

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