The Athens Area School District would like to take this opportunity to thank you for working with us as we continue to make school as safe as possible for students, faculty and staff. We are committed to in-person instruction as long as we are able to keep everyone safe. To do this though, we need your assistance. To this point, our plan has been successful and you have been a large part of that success. We must continue to work together as we strive to make health and safety our number one priority followed by a meaningful education for our students. We cannot afford to become complacent and ignore potential warning signs that someone may be experiencing COVID-19 related symptoms. We ask that you continue to call your building principals and inform them of any potential exposures, COVID tests taken by anyone in the home, and/or results of tests. This helps us make informed decisions and prevent any potential outbreak in our schools.
From what we have experienced so far, all of our positive cases have resulted in students or staff attending gatherings during unstructured time or weekends and contracting COVID-19 from outside of our school buildings. As we continue to collect and analyze our local data it is glaring and obvious that during the school week we tend to be very responsible and attentive to our health and safety protocols and as we approach the weekend we become very lax and inattentive to health and safety protocols.
We know what the consequences of moving to remote instruction are for our community. Trying to arrange childcare, lost wages, and closing of small businesses are just a few of the hardships we are trying to avoid. This does not include the negative and harmful impact on the social, emotional, and mental well-being of our students during remote learning. We need to work together to help make sure we are all being responsible, wearing masks, washing our hands, and practicing social distancing, not only during the school week, but during days off from school and weekends as well.
Here are some critical points that we want to share with everyone that helps keep schools open and students, faculty, staff safe and healthy:
• Please continue to screen your child(ren) daily by asking if they have any symptoms and taking their temperature before school. If your child is showing symptoms of COVID-19, please keep them home. Contact the school to inform us that your child will be livestreaming that day.
• If you believe you or your child have come into contact with a COVID-19 positive case, please keep your child home and contact us. We will work with you on what steps you should take
• If you have been tested for COVID-19 or your child has been tested for COVID-19, please keep your child home and contact us. We can talk to you about what to do and how we can help you. • Be mindful of social distancing, the wearing of face coverings, and washing of hands at ALL times not only during school hours.
• If you are worried about attendance, please call us. If you are helping our schools stay safe by keeping your child home, we are going to work with you.
With the holiday season approaching, there will be many opportunities to spread COVID-19 within our community. While we want everyone to enjoy this time of year, please be safe and do your best to minimize behaviors that increase the risk of infection. If you plan on traveling to a state on the Pennsylvania quarantine list, please discuss this with your building principal.
Thank you again for helping us provide a quality education to your students while keeping everyone safe. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to call, we are happy to assist you in any way we can.
For Each Other
Athens Area School District