DPS 109 To Stay In Remote Learning Until At Least 1/19/2021
K-5 SCHOOL RE-ENTRY
At this moment, we are still anticipating a January 19 resumption of the hybrid schedule. The board recognizes the benefits of some in-person instruction for our youngest learners, and there is growing evidence that the youngest children present the lowest risk for transmission. There was strong consensus that given the above and District 109’s strong mitigation protocols and PPE supply, the K-5 decision may not have to rely on local metrics as intensely.
THERE ARE NO GUARANTEES
While the plans are in place, as we have all seen over the last few months, things can change in a week. If the numbers spike or circumstances dramatically worsen, remote learning will continue for all. January 19 is a planned return date, NOT a guaranteed return date.
WHY JANUARY 19TH?
Allowing students to remain remote for two weeks when classes resume on January 4th will account for any potential travel or increased risk of exposure during the holidays.
PROGRESS ON ADDITIONAL TESTING
The district has had several meetings with at least two different test providers and is working on introducing saliva testing. The leading candidate, SHIELD Illinois, which is the saliva PCR test developed and utilized by the University of Illinois, is working on making testing available as quickly as possible. They are not sure yet whether they would be up and running by mid-January
WHAT DOES JANUARY 19th LOOK LIKE?
For elementary students, it would look a lot like the AM/PM hybrid schedule they have been following. Depending on how many families switch their instructional model, changes may be necessary.
WHAT WOULD KEEP US FROM RETURNING ON JANUARY 19?
This is an excellent question. While we are hopeful to have K-6 with us on January 19th, we will continue to consult the metrics set forth by the Lake County Health Department, consult with the Re-Entry Task Force, consult with other area superintendents, and seek advice of medical experts and others to determine if re-launching the hybrid model on January 19th is appropriate. The Board of Education has two regular meetings prior to this date, on Monday, December 14th and on Monday, January 11th, where we can re-evaluate where things stand and if any alterations need to be made to this timeline. The Re-Entry Task Force will meet at minimum following the December and January board meetings, giving that group several opportunities to provide input prior to January 19th.