Let me share with you what needs to occur for us to begin to bring students and staff back into the building:
- New Bedford would need to be in the "Green Zone" for four consecutive weeks;
- Once that occurs, we would first bring back Grades 5 and 6;
- One week later, we would bring back Grade 7;
- One week after tha, we would bring back Grade 8;
- The high school would remain remote until the CDC increases the capacity allowed in classrooms. (Given the current guidelines, we can only accommodate the middle school population.)
I’m sure your question is “when will all this happen?” So many factors will determine that answer with the most important factor being how quickly the Covid-19 vaccine can be administered. We do know the vaccine will be available to school staff between February and March. We also know the vaccine will not be administered to anyone under 16. The data we receive in the month of January will be critical in our future decision making. I will inform you of our next steps no later than January 18.
We want you to know that when we do return we are fully prepared to meet the health and safety guidelines. All rooms will have air purifiers. We have a large amount of Clorox wipes, masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. A new cleaning company has been hired that is trained in the necessary daily requirements.
I can not emphasize enough the need for all of us to follow the guidelines. Wear a mask, respect social distancing, avoid large crowds and as difficult as it is, limit your contact with others in your home to immediate family members. I recognize and share your frustration but I am optimistic that we are about to turn the corner. We have come so far that now is not the time to give up or to relax our efforts. Our school is a very lonely place right now but remaining vigilant will speed up our reopening. The holidays will be very different this year but take comfort in the bright lights, the music and the decorations. Until we meet again I want to wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. Stay safe!