The Ketchikan School Board will hold a public hearing Wednesday evening over a revised health emergency policy in the wake of fears of coronavirus spreading to Southeast Alaska.

It’s based on a model plan by the Association of Alaska School Boards which outlines how the school district would communicate with local health authorities. It would also authorize schools to purchase things like masks and gloves to prepare for a health emergency. The draft policy would also allow schools to quarantine kids or staff suspected of being sick with a serious illness, and require a doctor’s note before allowing them to return to classes.

The policy would also authorize the superintendent to order evacuations or lockdowns if necessary.

Before adoption, the policy would need to be brought back to the board for a second reading and vote.

Under new business, the board is scheduled to approve tenured teacher contracts for the 2020-2021 school year, and ratify the 2020-2023 negotiated teacher contract with the Ketchikan Education Association. KEA members approved the contract on March 5th.

The board will hold two executive sessions.  The first is for a student disciplinary hearing, and the second to discuss negotiations with administrative assistants and IBEW-maintenance workers.  No additional information was provided on the executive sessions.

The meeting begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Borough Assembly Chambers in the White Cliff Building. There will be time for public comment at the start and end of the meeting.