August 24, 2021
COVID Updates and Reminders
The following information was developed and agreed upon by superintendents from districts in the Champlain Valley.
Masking Indoors - We will follow the guidance of the Agency of Education (AOE) which that states “schools should require universal masking for all students and staff when indoors for the first 10 instructional days of the school year.” Following those first 10 days, schools can drop mask mandates for students 12 and over in any school where the student vaccination rate is equal to or greater than 80% of the school’s eligible population.
It is important to know that we will not immediately drop our masking policies once we hit the 80% threshold; our leadership team will review our local conditions, and check for additional CDC and AOE guidance before making the decision. At this time, masks are required and considered a condition of enrollment; please join us in this important mitigation strategy by ensuring masks are properly fitting, covering the nose, mouth, and chin.
Masking Outdoors - We will not require masks outdoors at this time. However, if you would like your student to wear a mask outdoors, please let your school know. We will do our best to remind students in these situations.
Masking on Buses - The federal government is requiring masks on all forms of public transportation to and from school, which includes the district buses and other modes of student transportation. CVSD buses will have windows down and physical distancing as much as possible.
Distancing - Presently, there are no recommendations from CDC or VT AOE regarding social distancing. However, we will do our best to configure classroom seating with the maximum allowable space between students.
Cleaning and Handwashing - Daily custodial cleaning will continue at all schools and handwashing and sanitation will be encouraged throughout the day with sanitation stations present throughout schools.
Meals - All schools will handle meal times differently at different grade levels. Our cafeterias will be open and students may eat breakfast and lunch in the cafeteria, keeping masks on except while eating. Seating charts will be maintained at the elementary level and schools will use strategies to increase physical distance, such as eating outside or in classrooms.
Water - Water fountains will again only be available for bottle filling this year. PLEASE bring a water bottle.
Outdoor Learning - Teachers are encouraged to teach outside again this year when appropriate. Unfortunately, the region is experiencing a tent shortage but we will continue to pursue tenting options.
In-person Assemblies - In-person, indoor assemblies are on hold until further notice, especially at the elementary level. At the middle and high school levels, our leadership teams will reassess once buildings reach 80% student vaccination status. We recommend virtual student assemblies. Outdoor assemblies or group meetings can be on a case-by-case basis and must comply with State guidance if any.
Sharing of Materials - Sharing of materials is allowable, however, we recommend limiting the sharing of materials when possible. Materials that might be close to a student's face, especially if unmasked, should be cleaned with an alcohol swab. (This should be standard practice outside of COVID.)
Music - We will follow the International Coalition Performing Arts Aerosol Study Updated Guidelines, which recommends for indoor classes singing with masks on, using bell covers for instruments, and limiting rehearsal times to 50 minutes.
Physical Education - Gymnasiums are open for use without restriction, however, we will continue to be outside as often as possible, weather permitting.
Hallways, Lockers/Cubbies, Congregate Spaces - Students can use locker rooms, lockers/cubbies as normal. We will not have hallway single-direction restrictions. Playgrounds, libraries, gyms, and cafeterias are open for normal use.
Visitors and Building Use - Visitors will be limited in the first two weeks of the school year; visitors, including those who are spectators for sporting events, are highly encouraged to be vaccinated and all must wear masks. Visits must be related to educational purposes. In-door building usage will be available for public uses that are not connected to the operations of the District after school hours. The public may use exterior school grounds including outdoor recess space/playgrounds (when not in use during the school day or during Afterschool programming).
Field Trips - Field trips will be considered on a case-by-case basis and will require approval by the Principal. Overnight trips or out-of-state trips will require Superintendent approval.
Contact Tracing and Pods - CVSD will participate in contact tracing directed by the VT Department of Health. We will maintain seating charts and classroom sign-in sheets to assist in this process and will create line lists and conduct initial outreach. While pods will not be required, at the elementary level, classrooms tend to naturally form groups that remain mostly self-contained with the exception of small group work and outdoor recess.
Remote Learning - If an individual student needs to quarantine, families can access the missed learning using our normal absence procedures. If an entire class is instructed to go into quarantine, teachers will deliver instruction remotely. This may be a combination of in-person virtual group work and self-directed work, depending on grade level and class responsibilities.
Surveillance Testing - This fall, the Vermont Department of Health is offering no-cost, voluntary COVID-19 surveillance testing to unvaccinated students and staff in Vermont schools. CVSD will participate in this testing to support in-person learning and co-curricular activities and monitor for the presence of COVID-19 among the largest unvaccinated population in our state. More details about this will be shared when it becomes available.
Bus routes are now posted on your school's website. Where we were able, we have included approximate pickup times. Please be ready at least ten minutes early and allow for us to possibly be ten minutes late on these first few days. Due to the unpredictability of ridership during the pandemic, we are unable to forecast exact times for bus pickup during the first week or two of school.
Calling All Students Ages 12 and up, and adults too!
The Vermont Department of Health will host COVID-19 vaccine clinics at CVU on the following dates: September 3 and September 24.
Sign up now for your first and second dose!
We are especially in need of para-professionals, but there are additional positions listed here as well.
CVSD Updates Annual Registration Process and Communication Platform
CVSD is implementing a new online process using a Powerschool platform called Enrollment Express for families to fill out and update the annual information and permissions.
We mailed a letter to homes last week. That letter provides the information families will need to set up an online account to update emergency contacts, health forms, permissions, and more. Please follow the directions in the letter and update your student(s) information as soon as possible so that we start the school year off with the most current information. (This will help us with bus routes, health information, and many other details!)
In addition, we've moved to a new platform for our email and phone messaging called School Messenger. Please allow emails from CVSDNoReply@cvsdvt.org and make sure they can get through to your inbox. That will help with communications around the enrollment/registration process as well as messages from the district and schools.