Elementary Back to Blended Tomorrow

Hadley to Remain in Full Remote Model

Tomorrow we will be back to the blended in-person model for all four elementary schools. Hadley Junior High School will remain in the full remote model.

clic para espanol
I am pleased to report that our first COVID-19 saliva surveillance testing results combined with positive tests that have been reported to school nurses over Thanksgiving break, have indicated that we are safe to return to the in-person blended model tomorrow, Thursday, December 3 for our elementary schools only.

There are a number of factors to consider to allow for in-person learning. Hadley Junior High School will remain in the full remote model due to the high number of staff quarantines and student quarantines. We will monitor the return dates for Hadley staff and Principal Diveley will provide an update early next week.

We will be preparing a summary of our first round of surveillance testing results to share. The priority right now is getting the message out for opening tomorrow. The very short summary is that we had 6 findings of clinical significance out of 1,847 samples processed by the lab.

What if I tested as a “finding of potential clinical significance”?

Individuals who tested as a “finding of potential clinical significance” were notified and asked to take the following steps:

  • Contact their Healthcare Provider for further instructions and guidance

  • Obtain a COVID-19 RT-PCR test and notify your school nurse of the result

If the COVID-19 RT-PCR test also comes back positive, the individual would isolate according to COVID-19 Interim Exclusion Guidance. Click here for the IDPH Exclusion Decision Tree.

If the COVID-19 RT-PCR test comes back negative and your student remains asymptomatic, please contact your school nurse.

When will you conduct the next COVID-19 saliva surveillance testing?

The plan is to send testing supplies home on Friday, 12/4 with a return date of:

  • Monday, 12/7 -- Grades PreK, K, 1 and 2 (Elementary) and Grades 8 and 7th Grade/PM Session (Hadley). Students who are in the AM session can do their saliva test at home either on Sunday night or Monday morning and return them to school. Students who are in the PM session should take their test on Monday morning before coming to school.

  • Tuesday, 12/8 -- Grades 3-5 (Elementary) and Grades 6 and 7th Grade/AM Session (Hadley). Students who are in the AM session can do their saliva test at home either on Monday night or Tuesday morning and return them to school. Students who are in the PM session should take their test on Tuesday morning before coming to school.

Please check your child’s backpack and put the testing supplies in a safe place over the weekend. We will not be able to replace lost testing supplies. You will receive a baggie that has 3 barcoded testing tubes in it. Only one will need to be used next week. Please hold on to the others for future testing dates.

*We are in the process of determining how we will get surveillance testing materials to Hadley students. More information will come directly to Hadley families. We will arrange for a drop off opportunity for Hadley parents or your elementary student can bring your Hadley student’s sample to school with them and drop it in the drop box at elementary.

What are some tips for collecting the sample from my child?

Click here for an instructional video about how to collect the saliva sample.

It takes most people 2 to 5 minutes to provide a saliva sample. If your child is still having trouble, the following suggestions can help increase saliva production:

  • Closing the mouth and wiggling the tongue

  • Gently rubbing the outside of the cheeks, just behind the back teeth

  • Making chewing motions with the mouth

  • Smelling or imagining smelling sour foods such as lemons

  • Thinking about one's own favorite food

Can I still sign my child up for surveillance testing?
Yes. It is important to have as much participation in the surveillance testing program as possible. Our goal is 90% participation to make the best evidence-based decisions. If you already signed up for the surveillance testing you will continue to be provided with the surveillance testing kits. If you have not yet signed the waiver in Skyward, you can do so now for the third round of surveillance testing that will take place the week of December 14. Once you sign up you will be in the system and do not need to sign the waiver again.

District 41 will continue to monitor COVID-19 across the district and will report on our COVID-19 dashboard while we are in the blended in-person model. Click here for the dashboard. Thank you to the Board of Education, Pandemic Response Advisory Team and all of our volunteers for making this surveillance process possible! Also, thank you to our partner Dr. Edward Campbell and Safeguard Surveillance, LLC for walking us through our first round of surveillance testing as well as our consulting epidemiologist, Dr. Mark Dworkin. We look forward to seeing our students and staff in-person tomorrow!

Dr. K.
Dr. Melissa Kaczkowski

Big picture