By CBSLA Staff

VENTURA (CBSLA) – With a new surge in coronavirus cases both in California and across the U.S., some school districts in Ventura County may be forced to postpone their reopening plans, officials reported Tuesday.

The Ventura County Office of Education (VCOE) announced that if the county falls back into the purple tier of California’s coronavirus recovery roadmap, schools which have not yet resumed in-person instruction will have to postpone plans to do so until the county gets upgraded back into the red.

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Moorpark High School students in class for the first time since the coronavirus outbreak began. Oct. 21, 2020. (CBSLA)

However, officials noted that those schools which have already reopened campuses will be allowed to continue keeping them open even if the county gets moved down to purple.

“If Ventura County does return to the purple tier, schools and districts that had already reopened would be permitted to continue with in-person instruction according to state and local regulations,” VCOE said in a news release. “However, individual schools that have not yet reopened would need to wait until the County moves back to the less restrictive red tier and stays there for 14 days.

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If Ventura County were to be downgraded to the purple tier, schools and districts that had already reopened would be permitted to continue with in-person instruction. The Moorpark Unified School District was the first district in the county to welcome back students last month. Simi Valley began in-person classes with K-3 graders last week.

Ventura County remains in the red tier, which categorizes the coronavirus numbers as “substantial.” As of Wednesday it has a daily adjusted case rate of 7.2 per 100,000 residents and a testing positivity rate of 3.0%.

Ventura County would be eligible to get moved into the purple tier because its case rate is above 7.0 per 100,000.

California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly announces which counties are moving tiers every Tuesday.

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“County health officials anticipate the move back to the purple tier could happen as early as next Tuesday, November 17, but is most likely to occur a week after that on Tuesday, November 24,” the VCOE said.