Dear Parents and Caretakers:
I just wanted to give a few brief updates as we continue to work through this unprecedented time together. I will try to be brief.
I appreciate the cooperation of our families during this suspension of our Food Program. Our plan is to resume deliveries on Tuesday, May 26th using our regular delivery process. I followed up with the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) and they have assured me again that our site is safe and our protocols were correct. In an abundance of caution we have thoroughly disinfected our food site and school buses. This was precautionary since the VDH indicated that there should be no trace of the virus given our protocols. But safety is our first concern so we took the extra step. I know the suspension produced some hardship for our families. If you need food assistance in the future, I am attaching a flyer with some resources and contact information.
Personal Item Return/Locker Cleaning
We have had questions about personal items that were left in the school. We know that many lockers were not cleaned out. We also need to get books and Chromebooks returned. We will work out a schedule during the week of June 15th. We do need to be careful as we return the items - both for safety and for the safety of our staff. To limit the number of students/families in the building, we will set up a schedule by grade level. We hope to have that schedule posted by June 5th so you can plan. It will be your responsibility to return the items and clean student lockers in accordance with the schedule. Stay tuned!
I did get a few emails in response to my last email that indicated that remote instruction could very well continue in the fall. I am well aware of the hardship that this could cause many families. I want to assure families that we will explore all options for fall instruction based on the best advice from the AOE, the CDC, and VT Department of Health. I just want to be prepared for what some may think is the "worst case scenario". If recommendations or guidelines prohibit in-person instruction, we have to be ready for that and we have to continue to improve our remote capabilities. The CDC just published their guidance for "Opening Up America" and it included many directives for school safety. I will provide the link below and ask that you pay particular attention to pages 45-48.
One small example from this document is the guidance related to transportation. We almost exclusively transport our students. The guidance states that all passengers and the driver maintain the 6 foot distancing regulation. So that might be 10 children on a bus. While legala in accordance with the guidance, is that practical and affordable? To me, these are the issues that need to be addressed as we consider opening in the fall and why I want to be prepared for improved remote instruction. But, our state will sort out the guidelines and we will follow the directives and guidance and directive to the best of our ability.
Here is the link to the full report issued in the the last 24 hours:
In closing, let me be clear that the social, emotional and physical safety our children are our first priority. We have to be attentive to the guidance from our policymakers, but then we have to look at it through the local lense as we determine how it impacts our children. That is first and foremost.
I appreciate the continued support. Our communities have been amazing. I want to wish you a great Memorial Day weekend. Finally, the weather is cooperating. Don't forget the attachment related to Public Food Service Information.
Dr. David Baker
Windsor Southeast Supervisory Union