Superintendent's Newsletter

May 12th, 2021

Dear FUSD Community,

Dear FUSD Staff and Community,


As is often the case with the month of May and June, there are many updates to provide our community and our staff. A quick summary of items covered in this newsletter include the following:


  • Thanks and Appreciation

  • Graduations

  • Vaccines for Children

  • FUSD/Stanford Children’s Hospital Community Forum

  • Upcoming Changes to State Guidance

  • Full Return in the Fall


Please review the important information below.


Thanks and Appreciation

As we reach the final weeks of the 2020-2021 school year, we are diligently working to ensure a successful and safe return to campus in August. The pending closure of this school year and fresh promise of a new start in August 2021 is keeping everyone busy and excitement is already building for the fall. I’d like to again call out my thanks and gratitude to our staff in FUSD. This past week was Teacher/Educator Appreciation Week, next week is Classified Employee Appreciation Week, and we certainly can’t overlook the recent recognition of School Nurses Day and School Lunch Hero Day as well. Fremont Unified is very lucky to have so many incredible teachers, support staff, and administrators to serve our students.


It was a collaborative effort from all those staff members that contributed to FUSD’s successful SAT administration this spring for our 11th grade students. We are continuing to hold successful in-person AP testing for specific subjects as required by the College Board. Thanks to our team of dedicated administrators and staff who’ve worked so hard to make sure these events are in place for our students.


Graduations

With only 23 days left in the year, we are even more excited about our future in-person graduations for our High School Seniors. FUSD will ensure our events are compliant with state and local guidelines for in-person ceremonies. In order to provide timely communication and important details to our Seniors and their families, FUSD will use the guidance that is in place on May 19, 2021, and operationalize those procedures and protocols for our in-person graduation events. This date has been established to make sure we have a set point for the guidance so that all the details can be finalized and all safety measures properly implemented.


In the coming weeks, our Class of 2021 will receive additional guidance and specific information from their school site. In a broad context, you can expect that these events will be held at Tak Fudenna Memorial Stadium, with our graduates seated on the field and audience members in the stands. Additional information regarding number of guests, pre and post graduation protocols, and event specific details will be provided in the coming weeks. I look forward to seeing these wonderful celebrations in-person and meeting more of our Fremont community.


Vaccines for Children

Many of you may have recently seen that the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) approved the use of the Pfzier vaccine for children ages 12-15. It was previously approved for children 16-18. In the coming days, there are further procedural steps for approval by government agencies, but we anticipate it will be available for children 12-15 years old in the immediate future. This week, along with some of our staff, I’ve been talking with local agencies that stand ready and willing to partner with FUSD to help provide access to the vaccine for our students, just as we were able to do for our employees. Please keep your eye out for further information from my office in the coming days about how FUSD and other community partners will be providing access for children to receive their vaccination for COVID-19.


Some of you may be wondering if it will be “required” that students be vaccinated. At this time, it is not anticipated that state or local health authorities will make the vaccine a mandatory requirement for the upcoming school year. I respect that each family will have their own conversations regarding the vaccine, as it continues to be made accessible for our youth. I am grateful for the community partners who are ready to help provide access for our students in Fremont and we stand ready to assist in those efforts.


FUSD/Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, Stanford - Community Forum

In an effort to keep our parent community and staff informed regarding the overall safety of returning to school in August, as well as recent vaccine approvals for children, FUSD is excited to partner with Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital for an upcoming Community Forum. We will host a webinar where Stanford Pediatricians will present our community with important information as well as answer questions from our community. I hope you’ll join us for this special opportunity, on Tuesday, May 25th, at 6:30PM. I am looking forward to attending as the Superintendent of Fremont Unified, and as a parent of two school aged children. You can find more information on the District website.


Upcoming Changes to State Guidance

As I’ve shared in earlier communications, it is anticipated that on June 15th, the state will move away from the “Blueprint for a Safer Economy”, which outlines the Purple, Red, Orange, and Yellow Tier system. At that time, the industry specific guidance may be altered and/or become no longer applicable. However, it is anticipated that the state, through the California Department of Public Health, will still provide specific guidance for schools. As FUSD receives that new guidance, we will certainly update our COVID-19 mitigation plans and safety parameters to ensure they remain aligned with both local and state guidance for COVID-19 health and safety protocols.


Although we won’t know for certain until we receive updated guidance, it is anticipated that key mitigation measures may include provisions such as face coverings, physical distancing, and ample testing and contact tracing. Of course, more information will be forthcoming as soon as FUSD receives updated guidance from the state.


Full Return in the Fall

As we continue our planning for reopening in the fall, we continue to reflect on the information provided in our recent non-binding survey. Of our nearly 8500 respondents, roughly 88% stated they were returning for full time in-person instruction in August. We recognize that this number may change and that families will need additional information before making any final decisions. Additionally, we anticipate this number may also change based on new information regarding vaccine approval and availability for students ages 12-18, including FUSD’s partnerships to make this vaccine accessible to our student population.


As I continue to work closely with both local and state officials to see how FUSD can best prepare for some of the yet undetermined possibilities at the state level, the message from state officials has only strengthened in recent weeks and days that the default mode of schooling this fall will be full time in person. This was echoed by the Governor today during his press conference related to school funding.


FUSD will be returning to full in-person instruction in the fall, while providing an option for secondary students through Vista, and an elementary level virtual program as well. Again, these programs are intended to be the exception to the norm. In the coming weeks, we will be providing more specific information regarding both the secondary program at Vista, and our elementary program.


As we continue preparations for the fall, we recognize COVID-19 will still be present in our community, although we hope in much lower numbers. We look forward to continued work with our labor unions to ensure a safe and full return to school, aligned with all health and safety measures from local and state agencies. We also will work collaboratively to ensure we have provisions in place for circumstances where we may need to be responsive to any specific outbreaks or developments with the virus. In collaboration with our labor unions and with a focus on our students, I am confident that FUSD will be fully prepared for August.


Additional communications will be provided to help inform our community of the scope of these programs, the implications of enrolling in either program, information about if it will be possible to move out of a program once you start, important considerations for transcripts at the secondary level, as well as home school attendance implications for elementary students.


If you’d like more information on the Vista program for secondary students, you can review the information session held earlier this month. We have two upcoming dates for information nights for our elementary virtual program on May 20th & 24th. More information will be sent to our community so they may register for one of those two dates.



CJ Cammack

Superintendent

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