PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Arizona Superintendent Kathy Hoffman in a series of tweets on Saturday afternoon called on Governor Doug Ducey to take action over distance learning after the holidays.
"Given the severity of our state's situation and the virus's trajectory after the holiday period, Gov. Doug Ducey should order schools to remain in distance learning for a limited two-week period to align with quarantine protocols and current AZDHS benchmark recommendations," Supt. Hoffman said in her initial tweet.
Supt. Hoffman's tweets go on to say she acknowledges the value of in-person learning and wants to see all students return to in-person learning but safely. Hoffman said she wants to make sure the state is doing everything possible to help healthcare workers and keep teachers and students safe.
In response to Supt. Hoffman's tweets, a spokesperson for Governor Ducey's Office sent the following statement:
Gov. Ducey will not be considering this request or issuing this kind of mandate. This is a local decision, the online option is already available, and the governor has repeatedly made his preference clear: Kids have already lost out on a lot of learning, and he wants schools opened, safely.
Supt. Hoffman's tweets follow one of the state's worst months in terms of new coronavirus cases. Arizona recorded 167,572 cases during the month of December. That's about 15K more recorded cases than September, October, and November combined, and double the previous record of cases by month recorded in June, which was 81,051.
With deaths still left to be attributed to a certain day, December is the second deadliest month of the pandemic behind July. In July, 2,344 deaths were recorded, while 1,707 deaths were recorded in December so far.
For the week of December 20, there were more COVID-19 hospital admissions than any other week since the pandemic began. That week saw 2,726 admissions statewide.
See Supt. Hoffman's full series of tweets below:
Given the severity of our state's situation and the virus's trajectory after the holiday period, Gov. @dougducey should order schools to remain in distance learning for a limited two-week period to align with quarantine protocols and current @azdhs benchmark recommendations.— Kathy Hoffman (@Supt_Hoffman) January 2, 2021