September 24, 2021
Dear Norridge 80 Parents and Families,
It has been awhile since I have updated you on our Covid-19 protocols and our handling of the Covid issues that the district is facing.
The Board has entrusted the admin team, under my direction, to handle all things relative to Covid-19 since last April. We are being deluged with guidance and changing guidance literally on a weekly basis. We review that guidance; we talk amongst ourselves; we reach out to other Superintendents and we listen to a host of zoom meetings put on by a variety of people, most notably law firms, before making changes to our protocols. This requires a tremendous amount of work and time. We are doing the best we can interpreting the guidance and then determining what we believe is the best way to go forward and stay in compliance with the guidance. Our goal has always been and will always be to send our students and staff home at the end of the day healthy and safe.
The challenge in all of this is to choose a path that allows us to follow the guidance and stay consistent in our practices and procedures. We strive to do that in everything that we do regarding our Covid-19 protocols and procedures.
I want to announce one significant change in our protocols going forward beginning on Monday, October 4, 2021. It is the recommendation of the Cook County Department of Public Health that all Cook County Schools enact a quarantine requirement for all non-vaccinated students and staff who travel to a high-risk state. This is only a recommendation and not a requirement. However; after consultation with my staff in District 80, I have decided to implement this recommendation for all District 80 students and staff. The specific guidance and list of states can be found here: https://cookcountypublichealth.org/communicable-diseases/covid-19/covid-19-travel-guidance/
I also want to let you know that we will begin posting our Covid-19 statistics on our district website as was done last year beginning this week. While we are seeing a slight increase in the number of positive individuals we have in the district and in the number of close contacts, our COVID-19 numbers are relatively low compared to other districts around us. I believe this is due in part to the support that we are receiving from each of you in helping us keep our students masked while they are at school and safe in terms of close contacts while they are away from school. Thank you for your support with this. There are many, many wonderful things happening in District 80 because our students and staff are interacting in-person each day. Our goal is to keep it that way.
Thank you for the trust you have placed in us to lead the district through these unchartered waters. I have been very clear about what my priority is with regard to establishing protocols. I will continue to lead with those thoughts in mind. Please feel free to reach out to me if you wish to discuss.