Coronavirus Update

Governor JB Pritzker announced that Illinois is on track to enter Phase 4, as the result of the effective social distancing measures implemented across the state. The Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Public Health have worked together to develop requirements and recommendations for schools to resume in-person learning this fall, while keeping students, staff, and loved ones safe and healthy. 
As such, the Governor held a press conference to discuss the reopening of schools in the fall. He addressed the need for our schools to follow mandated guidelines such as social distancing, wearing of masks, and limiting groups to 50 or below in spaces within each school. The Governor and the State Superintendent spoke about a hybrid model of instruction that may need to be implemented given the guidelines. The Governor also stated the need for schools to be flexible and be ready to return to remote learning if the metrics state the need to do so. Again, now more than ever, we will need your patience as we plan for and navigate these changes based on the
guidelines we received.

Right now, we don’t have all the answers to the questions in this document as we are still reading and internalizing it. Therefore, we kindly ask for your patience as we thoroughly review this detailed guidance and implement the suggestions into our district’s own reopening plan. We know some of the information and implementation measures contained in this document may be out of our control, but it is intended to keep our students safe, as difficult as the messages and allowances may be.

We have developed a task force that have been working to put procedures and processes in place as we look forward to school re-opening. Now that we have specific guidance from the State, our task force can move forward to finalize our plans. We know that our environment may need to look different as we transition through the different phases, but we are committed to the continued education of the whole child. Our commitment to providing opportunities will continue.

Elementary School District 159 is aware of the need to communicate to families about what to expect next school year and anticipate releasing our own reopening plan as soon as possible, most likely around Mid-July. As soon as we are comfortable with the plan, we will release it to parents and try to provide as many answers to questions that may be out there.

I am excited to be able to welcome students back to classrooms this fall. Schools will look a bit differently this fall than we are accustomed to, but our focus remains the same: ensuring each and every child receives the high-quality education they deserve.

Thank you for your continued support.

Dr. Mable Alfred