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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

INTERNET ACCESS SURVEY:
We have determined that we need detailed information regarding home internet access in order for us to make informed decisions regarding how we can best provide distance learning solutions for students, staff, and parents.  With that in mind, please complete this survey to assist us in the planning and delivery of our continuous learning plan.

LINK HERE: INTERNET ACCESS SURVEY

Resources:

Kansas Department of Health and Environment http://www.kdheks.gov/coronavirus/
Centers for Disease Control https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-for-schools.html
KASB: https://kasb.org/advocacy/keyresources/ (KASB will post additional resources on this page as they become available.
NSBA Legal Guide for COVID-19: https://www.nsba.org/Resources/coronavirus/legal-guide
CDC has specific guidance for travelers: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html
Handwashing: Clean Hands Save Lives: https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html

Past Comunications

Below you will find an archive of the information we have relseased.

March 17th

Covid 19 Update: Emporia Public Schools 3.17.2020
FROM: Kevin Case, Superintendent
DATE: March 17, 2020

I wanted to take this opportunity to update you regarding the most recent changes that are happening at the state level as it relates to the State of Kansas and The Kansas State Department of Education’s Response to COVID-19 and school closures. Just minutes ago, the governor announced an executive order that will affect all Kansas Schools. The order closes all school buildings for the remainder of the school year, knowing that some exceptions for small groups of students may occur, while putting a flexible plan in place to continue to provide ongoing learning opportunities for our students. The order also addresses how hourly staff will be compensated for the remainder of the year.

As I share this message with you, I understand the wide range of emotions that I believe many of you are or will be feeling:
• An abrupt end to face to face instruction for the school year;
• Concerns around childcare;
• Hundreds of logistical questions;
• The pending absence of numerous end of year activities including sporting events, music programs, and very likely graduation ceremonies.
• Navigating a possible change in delivery of student support services including special education.

Over the past 10 days, we have been in a non-stop whirlwind of uncertainty and change. Having said that, I also know that within every challenge lies an opportunity. Traditional school as we know it will be suspended, for the remainder of the year. We are, and will continue to collaborate with KSDE to further develop our Continuity of Learning plan. Our devoted, highly capable team in Teaching and Learning have been planning for how instruction can and will look different in such an event. During the week of March 23 – 27, our staff will continue to build and develop curriculum that will be delivered to all USD 253 students starting on Monday, March 30 through around May 22, 2020. As we have said all along, our response to the COVID-19 Virus has been rapidly evolving and while it brings challenges and unknowns, we have an incredible staff who will meet this challenge head on. I know you will have many questions over the upcoming days and weeks. The continuity of learning plan we put in place will provide the same level of opportunity for students to progress to the next grade level and earn graduation credits. We are committed to answering your questions and continuing to build our relationship with all stakeholders. As more information becomes available and plans become more firm, you can anticipate additional communication from us.

March 15th

March 15, 2020, Lyon County Public Health, in partnership with Lyon County Unified School Districts 251, 252, 253 at this time is recommending the Lyon County school districts USD 251, 252, 253 suspend operations for one week. This shift happened when Commissioner Randy Watson, strongly recommended schools close for the period of March 16 through March 20.  It is critical that staff and students follow this coordinated response to this situation. To further clarify:

  • No Students, No Activities March 16-20
  • No Staff Monday, March 16.  As we speak, we are developing information regarding essential personnel.  
  • Please be patient as we develop next steps to respond to this situation

By working together, each one of us has an opportunity to minimize the spread of disease. This time is not to be considered another spring break and you should practice social distancing by staying home and away from crowds.  I encourage you to continue using protective measures including washing your hands for at least 20 seconds, covering your mouth when you cough, and being fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication before returning to work.  

I am truly blessed to work with a group of dedicated professionals who have been working tirelessly over the past week to continue to further develop our response to this ever-changing situation.  We know that ultimately the way we respond to challenging situations will ultimately have a dramatic impact on the success of our intervention. Please join me in approaching these challenging times as an opportunity to provide leadership for our school and community.  We will continue to update you with additional information as it becomes available. 

Kevin Case 

Superintendent

Emporia Public Schools

March 10th

To: Emporia Public Schools Staff and Families
From: Community Relations
Date: March 10, 2020
Re: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Emporia Public Schools are taking precautions and monitoring information and updates relating to the Coronavirus or COVID-19. We will continue to rely on the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and our local health department regarding information and advice over the next several weeks. Our custodial teams completed recommended cleaning protocols for flu season training this fall and we will continue to review and emphasize the importance of our cleaning processes.

Currently, the district is following the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines for COVID-19 (below). The district will continue to follow the developments and we will revise the district response and plan as appropriate. There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, the CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the restroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
• If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
• Stay home when you are sick.
• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
• Clean and disinfect frequently-touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
• Follow the CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
• CDC does not recommend that people who are well, wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
• Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others.

Also, please continue to observe the USD 253 policy that students must be fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication before returning to school.

As additional information becomes available to us, we will keep you informed through all of our regular school communication channels. As always, Emporia School’s focus is to ensure the safety of all students and staff and to minimize any impact on student learning in our schools. If you have any questions regarding this or any other concern please contact the Community Relations Office
at 341-2200.

March 13th

Message to Parents, Guardians, and Staff:

We continue to monitor the latest information on COVID-19 and realize changes are occurring by the hour. In response to these changes, we have been collaborating with the Flint Hills Community Health Center (FHCHC) and Lyon County Emergency Management (LCEM) team to determine our best practices as everyone returns from spring break. We would like to provide you with our plans for Monday and Tuesday.  

As a result of our district-wide communication yesterday, we found that a number of our families and staff traveled out of state or out of the country during the break. With this in mind, we are being vigilant in working to keep our students and staff safe by collecting travel and health information as requested by the FHCHC.  

Staff, parents/guardians, and students who have traveled out of state during Spring Break are asked to complete the following Google form: Out of State/Country Travel Log. This will allow our school nurses the opportunity to begin to assess the health of our staff and students on Monday. This response is a collaborative effort between the FHCHC and USD 253 and will provide timely and necessary information. In order for us to gather this information, School will be canceled for students on Monday, March 16. In addition:

    • All school-related activities are canceled through Monday, March 16, effective immediately.
    • The use of district facilities, by community groups, is canceled until further notice.
  • Students will return to school on Tuesday, March 17.
  • All staff are expected to report on Monday, March 16 and will be receiving additional information regarding your schedule and other essential details.  
  • Medically fragile students and staff or those with compromised immune systems are encouraged to consult their primary care provider about whether attending school is advisable.  In cases where doctors do not advise attendance, please have them submit the proper paperwork to the school office or your immediate supervisor. This will allow the absence to be marked excused.
  • RecXtra has been canceled for Monday and will be available, again on Tuesday, March 17.

Updated communication will be sent out as needed.  As always, Emporia School’s focus is to ensure the safety of all students and staff and to minimize any impact on student learning in our schools. If you have any questions please email community.relations@usd253.net 

Screening Form Links:
English: https://forms.gle/XYNA2mPd1dxauxg7A Spanish: https://forms.gle/ShfPpaaretNHHR5Q7

USD253

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