12/17/2020 Important Message from District 89

December 17, 2020

Dear District 89 Community,

I hope this message finds you and your families safe and well. I am writing to update you on our current school plans for the weeks and months to come. We continue to monitor current public health and operational metrics to determine our ability to return to in-person learning. We remain committed to returning to in-person learning when it is safe and logistically feasible to do so. At present time the positivity rate of COVID-19 in our three communities continue to be in the substantial risk designation by the Illinois Department of Public Health. Additionally, medical experts are predicting a surge due to holiday gatherings and travel, and as such we will remain in eLearning for the remainder of the 2nd quarter and into the 3rd quarter following the plans below.

Pending improvement in the health and operational metrics, our goal is to begin a phased in approach to in-person learning beginning the week of January 25th. We will follow the recommendations set by the Illinois State Board of Education and will begin in-person learning with English Learners (EL) and students with Individualized Educational Programs (IEP) in kindergarten through 3rd grades. These families will receive a separate letter with additional information upon our return from winter break. All other students will remain in eLearning. Our goal is to implement a hybrid model for all grade levels at some point during the 3rd quarter if health and operational metrics allow us to do so. Please note that there will continue to be an eLearning option for students whose families choose not to have their child attend in-person learning.

We have already had success with in-person activities such as MAP testing, EL screenings, device distribution, food distribution and materials distribution. These have gone well due to our continued commitment to following all safety guidelines and precautions outlined by local and state health officials. To this end we will continue to evaluate public health data and best practices, with the safety and well-being of our students and staff as our top priority.

Thank you all for supporting student learning during this ongoing pandemic. We look forward to a time when all students and staff can safely return to all of our schools.

Finally, just a friendly reminder that we will be distributing 2-weeks’ worth of meals to our families this coming Monday, Dec. 21st, at our schools. There will be no meal distribution the week of Dec. 28th.

Should you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact your school principal. I wish you all have a safe and wonderful holiday break!

Dr. David Negron