District 41 Going Full Remote
Beginning Monday, November 16
Dear D41 Community,
I am writing to share that we will be moving all District 41 students to the full remote model starting on Monday, November 16. This morning we reached a point where we are not able to cover classes across the school district due to staff being out for sickness, quarantine or testing positive. The community transmission and the need for both students and staff to be on quarantine continues to increase. We have seen an increase in the number of positive cases identified in our students and staff as well as in the numbers of students and staff on quarantine. Each day this week, we have had to pull staff away from their primary responsibilities to cover classrooms. Tomorrow, we already know that we will need to pull staff to cover rooms, including our principals and assistant principals. While we are all in agreement about the importance of in-person learning for those who want it, we have hit a point where we must take an Adaptive Pause so that we do not jeopardize the safety of students and staff. Making the shift to remote for the next 5 days (4 days for Kindergarten and PreK students) is not an easy decision but it is a necessary one.
Full Remote Starts on Monday, November 16
All students will keep their current teachers
Students currently on quarantine will be assigned back to the original teacher on 11/16
Teachers will let in-person students know how to connect online starting Monday.
No disruption to the school calendar
COVID-19 Saliva Screening - November 30 and December 1
We will determine if we are safe to come back to the blended in-person model after the Thanksgiving break through our Board approved COVID-19 Surveillance Screening Program. We will have onsite saliva-based screening at our school buildings on both November 30 and December 1. More details about this procedure and screening location/s will be shared prior to these dates. We are still in the process of confirming details with SafeGuard Surveillance lab.
We ask that all staff and students who are in person give thoughtful consideration to participating in the surveillance program. If we have low participation in this screening we will not have enough information to know if we are safe to open coming off of a week of family gatherings, travel, etc. The District has made a significant investment in providing a mitigation tool to help us open more safely and from a well-informed perspective. Screening a large percentage of our students and staff will allow us to identify the probable positives who are asymptomatic and reduce the risk of transmission in our schools. In turn, we can reduce the need for shifting to remote. If it goes well, we hope to be back to the blended model as early as Thursday, December 3.
Thank you for your support and flexibility as we navigate this surge in transmission with the holidays approaching. Please reach out to our mental health staff if they can support your child with this shift.
Dr. Melissa Kaczkowski