Good afternoon CMS families:
Since the beginning of the year, we have sought to find a balance of safety and a sense of normalcy for our students. We are incredibly proud of how our students have responded and thankful for the relatively small number of positive COVID cases at Chardon Middle School. However, as everyone is aware, overall cases are rising in our county and we must continue to do everything that we can to minimize the spread to keep students safe, healthy, and learning in-person to the extent that we can control in the building. Given this, I wanted to share some observations and procedural changes with families.
At this point in the year, several students have masks that have been well worn-in and are now loose-fitting. Masks should fit snugly to a student’s face and cover both their nose and mouth. Please make sure that your child has multiple masks that fit appropriately - carried in their backpacks would be ideal. Masks should be washed daily.
Also, it is imperative that parents screen their children at home and do not send students to school if they are not feeling well. Daily, students are in the clinic reporting that they were given medicine in the morning and sent to school that day. This cannot happen. If students do not feel well, have a fever, or are showing any other symptoms of illness they should be kept home. The screening process is outlined on page 27 of the District Return to Learn Plan. Students should be fever-free for 24 hours without medication before returning to school. If a student is sent home from school sick, they will not be permitted to return for a full 24-hours. (Example: a student is sent home Tuesday with a fever of 101 degrees. The student may return no earlier than Thursday for the start of school if they have been fever-free without the use of OTC or other medication to reduce fever.)
Finally, we have further refined our lunch procedures to better control students and staff close contacts during an extended time frame that students are without masks. Students are rotating, based on assigned family groups, between eating in the cafeteria and classrooms. Staying in the classrooms allows students to utilize their desk shields while eating and allowing for further spacing between students in the cafeteria. Students in 4th and 5th grade have assigned tables by their teacher to minimize unmasked time with individuals outside of their classroom cohort. Students in 6th and 7th grade will have assigned seats, chosen by them, during the lunch period in order to consistently track contacts should the need arise.
I understand that some of the procedures, especially the change in lunch routines, have created questions from parents. Please know that we will continue to work with students to navigate these changes and support them in every way possible while continuing to prioritize the health and safety of our students and staff, and striving to do everything we can do in the building to maintain in-person learning.
Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the CMS Main Office.
Timothy Velotta, CMS Principal