Nebraska schools still setting virus plans as August looms

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska schools are still scrambling to set attendance and safety policies in the wake of a global pandemic, with the start of the new school year less than a month away.

Westside Community Schools in Omaha announced Tuesday that students will attend in-person classes only part of the week while distance-learning from home the rest of the week, the Omaha World-Herald reported. Westside's school year is set to begin Aug. 18.

Other schools, such as Papillion La Vista Community Schools, plan a full reopening of schools, while imposing mask and distancing policies. That has drawn objection from the local teacher's union, which said in a statement this week that the district's plan to fully reopen isn't safe.

Westside Superintendent Mike Lucas said that the district's plan could change, and all students could be required to stay home and learn remotely, if coronavirus conditions worsen by the start of school next month.

On Wednesday, the state's online virus tracker showed coronavirus cases continue to rise. Nebraska saw an additional 258 cases confirmed on Tuesday, bringing the state's total to more than 25,000. Nebraska also saw another four deaths Tuesday, to bring the state's total to 321 COVID-19 deaths since the beginning of the outbreak.

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