December 10, 2020

Superintendent Andy DuRoss sent the following email to District 54 families and staff on Thursday, December 10, 2020.

At tonight’s School Board meeting, District 54 provided an update on current public health and operational metrics. District 54 has always been committed to returning to in-person learning when it is safe and logistically feasible to do so. With medical experts predicting a surge due to holiday gatherings and travels, District 54 will remain in an adaptive pause and continue with remote learning on Jan. 4.

While there was no active virus transmission in our schools when we were open, the transmission in our community leads to increased numbers of students and staff testing positive or needing to quarantine under the Illinois Department of Public Health exclusion guidelines. This impacts not only the safety of our students and staff, but also our ability to effectively staff our buildings for in-person instruction. 

Return to In-Person Learning

On Jan. 11, pending improvement in the health and operational metrics, all District 54 staff will return to working on-site (with exemptions for staff members with approved accommodations for health reasons). Some of our special education students will also return that week. A separate communication will be sent to those students.

On Jan. 19 (the day after the Martin Luther King holiday), students who had previously been enrolled in hybrid instruction would return to the classroom following the same schedule they were on before the adaptive pause (Mondays/Thursdays or Tuesdays/Fridays). More information will be sent after winter break with reminders about the self-screener, mask requirements and other back-to-school notifications. 

We have developed these mitigation strategies in alignment with the guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health, Illinois State Board of Education and Cook County Department of Public Health. We will continue to evaluate the public health data and best practices, with the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff as our top priority.

Thank you to everyone who is doing their part to support our students, staff and families during this pandemic. We are preparing for and looking forward to a time when all students and staff can safely return to our schools. 

Until then, should you have any questions and concerns please don’t hesitate to contact your school principal.