Manitou Springs High School Faces Remote Learning

With 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19, MSHS is considered a Confirmed COVID Outbreak Cohort by the Colorado Department of Health.


Amanda Kerrigan

Miss. Jackson teaches remotely from her empty classroom Tuesday.

Flor Breuer and Amanda Kerrigan

On the afternoon of Monday, October 5th, Manitou Springs High School announced it would move to remote learning on Tuesday.  The school was not shut down by the health department at that time.

“It was a joint decision made by building administration and district administration,” said Manitou Springs High School principal, Mr. Hull on Tuesday.

At the time, 1 case of COVID-19 was confirmed.  There are currently 10 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and multiple outstanding COVID tests, according to communication sent to district stakeholders on Friday afternoon.  “102 staff and students have been quarantined since October 4th”, Superintendent Domangue reported to district families.  “The Colorado Department of Health considers Manitou Springs High School as a Confirmed COVID Outbreak Cohort.”  

So, what does this mean for the student body of Manitou Springs High School?  You asked the questions, and we got the answers:

What happens if we are late to our Google Meets?  

“Obviously, there [are] a lot of moving parts right now.  That is a factor that we haven’t even really discussed.   If someone shows up late to their Google Meet…if that starts to become a problem the teacher should notify the front office administration then we will have an individual conversation with that students.  We are not going to assign lunch detention because that would be pretty silly.  Teachers are still doing attendance,” Mr. Hull said.

Why do we still have 4 lunches while we are at home?

All students and parents were sent communication today that starting Monday, October 12th, the high school will return to the hybrid bell schedule.  There will no longer be 4 lunches.

Why do we still have the PSATs when it isn’t safe to learn in school? 

PSATs will be administered because students will be in small groups in testing rooms with masks and shields.   The district feels that this is a safe environment.  Make up tests will be given to quarantined students on October 29th.

Why don’t we, not just our parents, get email communication from the school about what’s going on?

“I just had that discussion this morning with some teachers,” Mr. Hull reported.  “Right now it’s a matter of trying to figure out how to do that in PowerSchool. When we send out mass emails we do it through our student management system PowerSchool. Trying to send it to student emails is very difficult, so right now we are actually working on trying to figure out how to get mass emails out to students on their student email.”

This problem appears to have been worked out.  Today, students received email communication about next week’s remote learning.  

When we go back on the 19th is it going to be both cohorts or just one?

“That’s up in the air at this point.  We’re going to see how the next week and a half plays out as far as cases and people with symptoms and [hopefully] make that decision some time next week,” Mr. Hull said.

After we return Oct. 19 will remote learning be a recurring thing?

“I wish I could predict the future. You know, ideally, I hope we come back the 19th.  You know as well as I do the virus has no boundaries. We can only do our best to keep ourselves safe and follow the guidelines and then there [are] less chances of positive cases.  A lot of doctors and epidemiologists are predicting there is gonna be a spike when the weather gets colder.   I think we just kinda have to roll with it as a school community and do our best during these difficult times.”


The last week has been challenging for the Herd.  We started the week back at school with full-time in-person learning, and we are ending the week remotely with 10 positive COVID-19 cases, a fire burning near Barr Trail, and a morning power outage in the city of Manitou Springs. Despite everything, students are still showing up to classes remotely and trying to see the positive side of things.