November 13, 2020
Dear Highland Families,
Today marks the last day of the first quarter and I wanted to take this opportunity to acknowledge what a great job our students, staff and families have done to help make this quarter such a success! When we returned in September, we knew that it would take everyone working together, both inside and outside of our schools, to not only reopen our schools in a responsible manner, but to remain open for in-person learning, as long as possible.
We are all aware of the significant increase in positive COVID-19 cases in Ohio and in our county over the last several weeks. While we have seen a small increase this week in the number of students and staff who have tested positive in our schools, that number remains low overall. We will continue to diligently monitor any increase of positive cases within our district and within each of our schools and use that local data to inform decisions regarding our daily operations.
Today, the data does not indicate that we need to move into either hybrid or remote learning given our district case count, but that could change very quickly given the rate and trajectory of community spread. As we shared at the beginning of the year, families and staff must be flexible and ready to quickly transition into either hybrid or remote learning, whenever necessary.
Please continue to do all that you can to encourage students to avoid social gatherings that may unnecessarily increase their risk of exposure (such as birthday parties, sleepovers and football watch parties). It will be important to remain vigilant over the next several weeks and we ask for your continued cooperation.
There are several additional items that I would also like to share with you today:
- 1st quarter ends on Friday, November 13.
- Reports cards will be issued on Friday, November 20.
- All report cards can be accessed through PowerSchool at the end of school next Friday.
- 2nd quarter begins on Monday, November 16 and runs through Friday, February 5.
- Typically, our second quarter ends prior to leaving for winter break, but due to our delayed start, second quarter will extend into February.
- Thanksgiving Break: November 25-29.
- Winter Break: December 21 through January 3.
Registration for 2nd Semester Learning Models
As shared previously, the district will be offering the opportunity to register your child for the second semester learning model that works best for your family.
- Option 1 (In-Person Learning)
- Option 2 (VLA – 100% Virtual Learning through Edgenuity)
We will be asking families to complete a registration/commitment form ONLY if you want to make a change to your child’s current learning model.
Example: If you want to change from in-person learning to VLA, you will need to submit a new commitment form for your child. If you want to change from VLA to in-person learning, you will need to submit a new commitment form for your child.
If you want your child to stay in their current learning model, you will not need to submit a new commitment form. By default, your child will be assigned into their current learning model, UNLESS a change request is completed by the parent.
Additionally, a similar (but separate) registration/commitment form will be sent regarding bus transportation. Again, you will complete the form ONLY if you desire a change in bussing.
Example: If your child currently rides the bus, or you currently drive your child to school and you will continue to do so, then there is no need to complete the form. However, if you currently drive your child and would now like to utilize the school bus, you will need to submit a form for your child.
The registration commitment forms will be available from November 30 through December 4.
They will be distributed through our electronic newsletter (Eblast) system and available on our website.
*The deadline to make a change is Friday, December 4.
AGAIN, NO ACTION IS NECESSARY UNLESS YOU ARE REQUESTING A CHANGE FOR SECOND SEMESTER.
The district has received several questions this week as it relates to COVID-19 protocols. In an effort to answer some of these questions, we offer the following information.
- Q. Who is considered a direct contact/close contact to someone with COVID-19?
- A. A direct contact/close contact is anyone who was within 6 ft. of an infected person for 15 minutes or longer. *An infected person can spread COVID-19 starting 48 hours (2 days) before the person has any symptoms or tests positive for COVID-19.
- Q. When will the school district contact you?
- A. There are three types of contacts the district may make with a family.
- Close Contact Call: This will be a direct call from the school that notifies a parent that their student meets the definition of being a close contact to a person with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19. The call will confirm that your student may have been exposed; we have submitted their name to the health department for contact tracing; your student will most likely be required to quarantine; and your student may not return to school until released from quarantine.
- General Classroom Notification: Parents will receive an email from the school that states their student is in the same classroom as a student or staff member who has tested positive, but was not determined to be a close contact based on the district’s contact tracing.
- District Notification: The district will send a notification (Eblast) to all Highland parents when there is a positive case in any of our schools.
- Q. Can I test out of quarantine?
- A. No. Test results, whether negative viral test or positive antibody test, cannot shorten the 14-day quarantine period. This is important, because symptoms can appear up to 14 days after exposure.
We Need Your Continued Assistance
In order to keep all of our students and staff as safe as possible, we ask families to do the following:
- If your child or anyone in your household has a confirmed positive COVID-19 test result, please do not send your child to school.
- If your child or anyone in your household is awaiting COVID-19 test results, please do not send your child to school.
- If your child is experiencing any COVID-like symptoms, please err on the side of caution and do not send your child to school.
- If your child has been quarantined by the Medina County Health Department, please do not send your child to school prior to being released from quarantine.