Dear District 27 Parents,
We are officially three weeks into the school year, and it is so great to see our students and staff becoming more comfortable with our new learning environment and safety protocols. Thank you for your dedicated efforts in helping us set these new expectations early on, as it has made for a positive start to the school year.
It is important to remember that while this school year feels like a step toward normalcy, we are still very much living in a pandemic and many aspects of our school day will continue to reflect that. As we move further into the school year, each classroom community will become better connected, and our practices will continue to become more sophisticated.
Parent/Teacher Conferences, October 14-16
As we started planning for our Parent/Teacher Conferences, it became clear that our typical structure would simply not afford enough time for our teachers to meet with every parent in a virtual format. We realize parents are eager to meet with their children’s teachers and do not want anyone to feel rushed during their conference time. Therefore, Friday, October 16 will be an additional Parent/Teacher Conference day. There will not be school that day, which was originally planned as an A Day in our hybrid schedule.
School principals will be sending out more information regarding Parent/Teacher Conferences and registration for time slots. In summary, Parent/Teacher Conferences will be held October 14-16. Wednesday, October 14 will be a regular school day with conferences held in the evening. There will not be school on Thursday, October 15 or Friday, October 16. Should we need to implement a similar structure for our February conferences, we would look at Friday, February 5, which would be a B Day. The updated A/B calendar can be found here.
COVID-19 Safety Protocols
We just received new COVID-19 safety guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health. Please take time to review the updated IDPH Decision Tree. Below is how we would handle various scenarios based on state and local guidance:
• If a child or staff member is symptomatic while at school, the school nurse will conduct an assessment of the person and send him or her home if they exhibit COVID-related symptoms. Being sent home does not mean that the student or staff member has COVID. It is meant to decrease exposure while the individual is getting evaluated or tested to make sure that they are safe to return to school.
• If a child presents symptoms at home, he/she will stay at home and seek medical attention, get a COVID test, or stay home for 10 days. The child’s doctor will determine the diagnosis. Parents will be directed to contact the school on the diagnosis and let us know the time they must be home. The student will then participate in remote learning.
• If a child is living in a household and/or in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID, the IDPH requires that the child stay home for 14 days. In this case, the principals will communicate with all of the child's assigned teachers so they are aware of the time frame the child will be at home. The student will then participate in remote learning.
• When a close contact is confirmed or a confirmed case of COVID is identified, the District will send you a notification of the case. In accordance with FERPA, no specific identification of the person will be shared. However, the Cook County Department of Public Health will work with the District to investigate any close contact that may have occurred.
• When a student is sent home due to COVID-related symptoms, they must do one of three things:
Get a COVID test with documentation of negative results; or
See their physician to get an alternative diagnosis; or
Stay home for 10 days.
In any case, the student cannot return to school unless their symptoms have improved/resolved, and they are fever-free without fever-reducing medication. All siblings of the student will be sent home as well. They cannot return to school until the student who had the symptoms completes the above protocols.
Thank you for your continued support. We realize this guidance is ever-changing and appreciate your unified commitment to keeping our schools safe. We are truly stronger together. In the spirit of unity, please join me in remembering 9/11 and honoring those that lost their lives on that fateful day we will never forget.
Dave Kroeze, PhD.
Superintendent of Schools