As COVID-19 cases rise, schools return to remote learning, library temporarily closes to public

Updated 11/19/2020 4:55 AM

They were the last men and women standing. Until Sunday.

Less than a week after the Glenbrook High Schools District 225 Board of Education broached the subject at its Nov. 9 meeting, Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns announced on Sept. 15 that Glenbrook North and Glenbrook South high schools will go into Adaptive Pause.


The high schools join elementary school districts 27, 28, 30 and 34, which announced a temporary end to in-person learning on Nov. 11; and West Northfield District 31, which announced its Adaptive Pause on Nov. 12.

An adaptive pause allows schools to move in and out of in-person teaching under a district's learning plan, depending on conditions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic health metrics. District 225 uses metrics gathered from Northern Cook County and Glenbrook ZIP codes.

An email sent by Johns to parents and students on Nov. 15 said District 225 would enter fully remote learning on Nov. 18.

"Unless there is significant improvement in conditions in the short term," the email stated, students wouldn't return to hybrid instruction until Jan. 19, the first day of the second semester.

Criteria for going in and out of an Adaptive Pause include positivity rate, new cases and numbers of students and staff who either have had new positive tests or are in quarantine.

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If positivity rate and new cases are indicated as "substantial" for two straight weeks, Adaptive Pause may be entered. Those two metrics must return to "minimal" or "moderate" status to move out of it -- and possibly also if school data doesn't reflect the surrounding area.

In the most recent data provided for Northern Cook County and Glenbrook ZIP codes, weekly new cases were well above the lowest rate listed as "substantial" (100 per 100,000 people). Though formerly below the threshold, by Nov. 12 test positivity in Glenbrook ZIP codes joined the Northern Cook County in surpassing the minimum substantial rate of 8%.

Dr. Johns' email noted that options for extracurricular activities and athletics in District 225 are under review. Each program is being assessed on a case-by-case basis.

The Illinois High School Association's winter sports season began Nov. 16 for boys and girls basketball, boys and girls bowling, cheer, dance, girls gymnastics and boys swimming. Not all those programs are found at both Glenbrook high schools. An IHSA meeting concerning basketball was scheduled for Nov. 19.


On Nov. 11 elementary school districts 27, 28, 30 and 34 went into adaptive pause through Jan. 15. District 30 will begin its pause after school on Nov. 20. Students will return on Jan. 19.

Along with the health metrics, considerations urging adaptive pause included staffing and substitute challenges due to isolations and quarantines from the community spread of COVID-19; and expected travel during the holidays, according to a release issued by the elementary school districts on Nov. 11.

In West Northfield District 31, Northbrook's Field Middle School moved to fully remote learning on Nov. 16 while Glenview's Henry Winkleman Elementary School will start its version after the Thanksgiving break, on Nov. 30. The tentative return date for both is Jan. 5, though that's pending board action in December to either confirm or extend that date.

Also, after the Northbrook Public Library was notified Nov. 12 that an employee had tested positive for COVID-19, it closed to the public temporarily until at least Dec. 8. The employee last interacted with patrons on the afternoon of Nov. 6, according to a library news release on Friday.

Library services remain available, including curbside pickup, technology help, remote printing services and virtual programming. Outdoor book-drop service remains active as does delivery service to people confined to their homes.

People without a library card or whose card has expired may also complete an online form to receive a temporary card via email. Staff remains on hand to help patrons by calling (847) 272-6224. The library also is accessible by email at

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