COVID-19 Update 3-31-20

Dear Parents, Students, Staff, and Community Members,

As you have likely heard by now, Governor Mike DeWine has mandated that schools remain closed through Friday, May 1st.

I ask for your patience and understanding as we work through the additional logistics of this extension of the school closure for our students, staff, and all of the parents in these unprecedented times. There are so many moving parts and pieces to a district and we want to make absolutely certain that they all fit and work smoothly together. In the meantime, the rest of this week will go on as planned with our continuity of learning and providing food service for the students as needed. We have developed a plan for our K-3 students to pick up Chromebooks at the end of this week. We will be passing out Chromebooks for grades K-3 this Friday, April 3rd from 5:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. and Saturday, April 4th from 10:00 a.m.-noon. Kindergarten student Chromebooks will be picked up on the playground side of the building (south side). First and second grade can pick up in the front of the building.  Finally, the third grade will pick up on the Scarlet gym side of the building (north). A reminder to keep your social distance and two staff members will be at each location. We would ask for a bit of patience as we navigate through the pick-up locations and time. I have included factual “status updates” below, as they have transpired through these times.

I would like to thank all of the parents, grandparents, students, staff, and administration for your efforts in our best attempt to keep the educational process moving forward with the circumstances we all face today and beyond. It takes a team of people in any organization to be successful. All of us are truly working for our children today, but more importantly their futures. Again, thank you!  I know yesterday’s message by Governor Mike DeWine was something he had been alluding to, but nonetheless, it is tough on all of the students and adults. As I have said to the staff and I will say to all of you, we must all keep in mind our children’s mental and physical well being. Make sure to laugh at something and stay positive. Additionally, this time is tough on the adults as well. I know that and all of you know that. We all must remain strong. We must all remain together, simply we are all truly in this together. Take care of your families, take care of yourself, and take care of your children, as they need you the most right now. 

Next, if you have questions or need support, please contact your child’s teacher or counselor via  email. Staff emails are located on the school’s website. This is extremely important to make sure we are all on the same page. We are here to help in any and every capacity, but in a different remote environment. 

Status Updates for Parents and Students

  • Governor DeWine issued an executive order stipulating all Ohio K-12 schools be closed from the end of the day on March 16-April 3, 2020
  • Governor DeWine and ODE expect that schools continue to provide instruction through a variety of means. These days of instruction are counted as instructional days and not calamity days. 
  • President Donald Trump has recommended that you avoid gatherings that have more than 10 people in them. 
  • Governor Mike DeWine has initiated a “Stay at Home” order for all nonessential personnel that went into effect March 23rd  at 11:59 pm.
  • March 26, 2020, Jerry Snodgrass, OHSAA Commissioner announces the cancellation of winter sports tournaments.
  • Governor Mike DeWine announced, Monday, March 30, 2020 that the Ohio schools will remain closed until Friday, May 1st. 
  • March 30, 2020, Jerry Snodgrass, OHSAA Commissioner announces the postponement of spring sports until at least May 2, 2020. 

Questions/Answers as they have come up:

What will we do for our K-3 students with the extended closure? 

  • We will be passing out Chromebooks for grades K-3 on Friday, April 3 from 5:00-6:00 p.m. and Saturday, April 4 from 10:00-noon. Kindergarten student Chromebooks will be picked up on the playground side of the building (south side). First and second grade pickup will be in the front of the building. Finally, the third grade will pick up on the Scarlet gym side of the building (north). A reminder to keep your social distance and two staff members will be at each location. We would ask for a bit of patience as we navigate through the pick-up locations and time. 

Where are the locations for students that do not have wifi? 

  • We have set up multiple spots for our students to use, but due to recent mandates the “hot spots” are now limited to: The parking lot of PJ’s Brickhouse provided by Bascom Communications, Meadowbrook Park will have their front parking lot open Monday-Friday 8:00-4:00 and Saturday 8:00-8:00, Wal-Mart has a special room set up for limited students, please ask a manager. We are exploring more ideas and if you have an idea, please send it my way.

Will we have state testing? 

  • Not for this current school year.

Will we return to school after this extended closure?

  • This is to be determined, so please stay tuned. The Governor has alluded to this in the past, but I cannot speculate on this matter.

Will we have graduation?

  • I have been working on several concepts and one as recently as today. This too, is a very fluid situation as things and restrictions continue by the Governor. 

In conclusion, thank you to all! These times are tough and we all know that. We all have a “circle of influence” and we all can “Choose Happy” or go down a different path. We are all in this together and together we will overcome.

Stay healthy,

Jeffrey A. Holbrook

Hopewell-Loudon Local Schools Superintendent