The Edmonds School District announced Friday it is suspending all districtwide community events and student activities from Monday, March 9 through Sunday, April 12, to address the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes high school athletic competitions, concerts, dances, plays, and information nights.
“Edmonds School District sports practices, rehearsals, and school club meetings will continue to be held, as we view those as extensions of the school day,” District Superintendent Dr. Kris McDuffy said. “This includes Right At School, Move 60!, and our other before and after-school childcare services.”
Noting these are “unprecedented times for our school community as we deal with the COVID-19 outbreak,” McDuffy outlined the district’s decision in a letter Friday to district families and staff. “We know this situation is unsettling and we continue to put the health and safety of our students and staff first,” she said. “It is important to note that there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Edmonds School District at this time. The Snohomish Health District continues to recommend that schools without confirmed cases remain open.”
Here are plans as released by McDuffy on Friday:
Community event and student activities
The district is moving forward with the latest recommendation from the Snohomish Health District, the Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to practice social distancing with people outside our individual school communities.
We made this decision based on two priorities: 1) to reduce the exposure of our school communities to visitors who may have been exposed to COVID-19; and 2) to conserve our resources, including cleaning supplies and staff time, to ensure that we are able to maintain normal educational operations for as long as possible.
Community use will be suspended beginning Monday, March 9, through Sunday, April 12.This includes all events in district facilities and on fields led by community partners and all after-school activities led by outside groups. We are thankful for the dedication of our custodians and want to give them extra time to complete the additional cleaning currently needed in our buildings to again, maintain normal educational operations for as long as possible.
Sporting competitions, concerts, dances, plays, and information nights are cancelled or postponed beginning Monday, March 9, through Sunday, April 12. We know how hard our students work and how much our community loves to enjoy their talents. However, we feel this precaution is necessary to reduce possible exposure to our school communities. Edmonds School District sports practices, rehearsals, and school club meetings will continue to be held, as we view those as extensions of the school day. This includes Right At School, Move 60!, and our other before and after-school childcare services.
All local, out-of-state and international field trips scheduled between Monday, March 9, and Sunday, April 12, are now cancelled. Our hearts go out to all the students, families and staff who have worked so hard to be able attend these wonderful events. Unfortunately, at this time, the district needs to minimize as much risk as possible and has made the tough decision to cancel these field trips. We will continue to monitor the situation and will update our community on our decisions past April 12.
While attendance is very important, we understand that each family’s circumstance is unique, and we respect the decisions made by each family. For families who have chosen to excuse their students from school, please continue to communicate absences to your attendance office. We will be following our regular procedures for excusing work and/or permitting students a reasonable amount of time to make up any missed work for excused absences. If you expect that your student is going to be absent for an extended period of time (i.e. five days or more), please communicate directly with your student’s teacher(s).
Stay home when you are sick
Students and staff with symptoms such as cough, fever, and/or difficulty breathing, or who have been contacted by public health because they are a close contact of a confirmed or presumptive positive case, should stay home from work, school and other activities. Do not have your student return to school (or staff return to work) until 72 hours after fever has resolved or seven days after the illness began, whichever is longer. If you have specific questions about your symptoms or care, contact your medical provider. Please call ahead before showing up to a clinic or other health care facility.
The current protocol for school nurses regarding COVID-19 is to send students home if they present with fever.
Plans underway for educational resources should schools close
- Short-term school closures:
- The district has decided that if the Snohomish Health District directs us to close school for COVID-19 and the closure ranges between one and five days, those days will be treated similar to snow days for all students. Missed days will be waived as needed.
- School closures approximately six to 14 days or longer:
- The district is actively planning how to make educational resources available for students and their families should the Snohomish Health District direct our district to close for six to 14 days, or possibly longer. Teams are working out the specifics right now and we will update you with that information as soon as possible.
We have made the decision to open our district’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and implement Incident Command System (ICS) as part of our pandemic plan for COVID-19. A central location and process will coordinate all district decisions and communications as we continue to work with and take direction from the Snohomish Health District.
Our decisions may change as this situation evolves. All our decisions are guided by the safety of students, staff, families, and community. We will continue to update our Coronavirus (COVID-19) webpage daily. We want to express our appreciation for the patience of our community as we work through the daily challenges COVID-19 has presented us.