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A student exits a District 11 school bus.

Three District 11 high schools are pivoting to distance learning amid a rise in COVID-19 cases throughout Colorado Springs and El Paso County.

Palmer High School shifted to remote learning on Tuesday and plans to reopen its classrooms May 4. Doherty High School went remote on Thursday, with a projected return date of May 10. Coronado begins remote learning on Friday and expects to have students back in the classroom in May 10.

In announcements to students and family members, the three schools explained that the shift to online learning was driven by a recent increase in COVID-19 cases. Coronado and Palmer have each had 18 confirmed cases in the month of April, according to county health data. Doherty has had 17.

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The bell schedule for the affected schools will remain the same, but buses will not run and the school buildings will not be open, officials said.

The shift will affect most extracurricular activities, including prom, for all three schools.

Palmer’s prom, originally scheduled for Friday, will be rescheduled to a date after graduation, school officials said. Coronado has postponed their prom from May 8 to May 26. Doherty’s prom, scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed to an unspecified date.

Sports practices for all three schools have been canceled during the remote periods, with games to be rescheduled depending on availability.

All three schools plan to hold graduation ceremonies on time and on schedule.

Students and families looking for additional information can visit the schools’ respective websites.

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