‘Excessive’ COVID absences force school closures in Portland
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Three schools in Portland, Oregon, were closed on Friday due to staffing shortages and “excessive” absences caused by COVID-19. Officials from Portland Public Schools, the state’s largest school district, said 431 staff members had called out by Thursday evening. At least 175 of the positions were unable to be filled by substitutes. As a result, Cleveland High School and McDaniel High School were closed Friday. Both schools will be doing distance learning starting Monday through at least Friday, Jan. 14. Officials from Parkrose Elementary School also cancelled class on Friday, citing “excessive staff and student absences,” along with a lack of available substitute teachers. Parkrose Superintendent Michael Lopes Serrao confirmed to KOIN 6 that the absences are COVID-19 related.