- Christina Early Education Center
CSD Return to Hybrid Learning Updates
January 4, 2021
We hope everyone has had a safe and healthy start to the new year. As we embark upon new beginnings, we will continue to evaluate our status of Hybrid and Remote Learning. Today, Governor John Carney and the Division of Public Health announced the launch of the COVID-19 Community Spread Dashboard that includes more district-specific data related to the coronavirus. Governor Carney, along with the Department of Education, urged Delaware schools to return to Hybrid Learning, with a mix of remote and in-person instruction beginning Monday, January 11th (Read the full letter to school leaders, educators, and parents here). Governor Carney stated that his priorities are “bringing children back to school safely and getting the vaccines to Delaware’s vulnerable populations and essential workers.”
On Monday, January 11th, all Hybrid Cohort A students Grades PK-12 including special programs, will return to In-Person Learning with Hybrid Cohort B students returning on Thursday, January 14th to In-Person Learning. For more information about Hybrid Learning, please visit our website.
Prior to Thanksgiving, the Christina School District moved to full Remote Learning due to operational issues in a number of our schools. Statewide, similar issues lead to the recommendation of a pause in Hybrid Learning from the Governor’s office as the State worked to identify and address these issues. It was important that the issues be addressed in a safe way that followed the medical research and CDC guidelines. Examples of operational concerns that could lead a classroom, grade level, school or the district to have to return to Remote Learning include but are not limited to:
- Quarantine of a group of individuals who are identified as potential contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive
- DPH contact tracing and/or quarantine recommendations
- Key personnel who are in quarantine
- Evidence of community spread within a school building
We take the health and safety of our students and our employees very seriously and will be closely monitoring each of our buildings as students and staff return to Hybrid Learning. We know from the data that we have collected that Remote Learning does not lead to the outcomes we want both in student engagement and learning. In order to ensure our schools are safe, the following protocols and enhancements have been put into place:
Health and Safety Protocols:
We will add to our existing protective measures by implementing the following health and safety protocols in all of our schools:
- Regular announcements and messaging about hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
- Encouraging students and staff to stay at home when feeling ill or exposed to an individual with a COVID-19 diagnosis or symptoms
- Consistent and pervasive district-wide requirements for all teachers, staff and students to wear face masks while on campus and use of appropriate social distancing.
- Continued district-wide commitment to high standards of cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing
- Continued planning for student safety while riding school buses
The Christina School District Facilities Department will continue to supply PPE and COVID-19 labeled disinfectants to our buildings. BioProtect, which gives a 90-day window of protection on surfaces against COVID-19, was reapplied over Winter Break to all higher touch surfaces in our schools. Sterionizer air purifiers have been installed at the Brennen School and the Christina Early Childhood Center. They are in the process of being installed in our other schools with shared ventilation systems. The ventilation systems across the District remain set to provide higher levels of fresh air as a strategy to minimize the spread of the virus.
Testing is a key strategy to minimize the spread of COVID-19. To that end, Christina has partnered with Mako Medical to provide on-site testing for Christina families. Please find testing dates and sites here. We are also working with the State of Delaware to provide rapid Antigen testing within our school buildings. You will receive additional information as well as a permission form to opt-in to this program in the coming days.
School nurses will continue to monitor the daily impact of the virus as certain health concerns may trigger a school closure, such as positive cases, quarantines, virus symptoms and limited availability of teaching staff and bus drivers.
Please be mindful that the “Three W’s:” Washing your Hands, Wearing a Mask and Watching your Distance, are critical to keeping the virus from spreading in our community.
Governor Carney, Delaware Division of Public Health and the Delaware Department of Education believe that schools are one of the safest places. We will continue to work with state health officials to maintain a safe environment for our students and staff while maximizing our educational impact using diverse learning models.
Finally, I want to conclude by thanking all of our teachers and staff who have worked tirelessly throughout this pandemic to provide food, learning opportunities and a safe and healthy environment for our kids. I also want to thank our families for their patience and the grace they have shown as we have worked through the struggles of educating children during this pandemic. THANK YOU! The safety of our students and staff remains our number one priority. For more information and updates, visit www.christinak12.org.
Dr. Dan Shelton, Superintendent
Christina School District