Greetings Mount Vernon City School Families,
Beginning this summer, we have regularly communicated our intentions to allow parents the right to choose for themselves whether their child(ren) should wear a mask while in school. At the same time, we have also articulated the need to have safeguards in place should we find ourselves in a situation where COVID positive case numbers, combined with quarantined students, would compromise our ability to perform daily instruction.
The number of students placed in quarantine, from within and outside of the school setting, continues to rise daily. As hundreds of students are quarantined, attendance and therefore, student learning is negatively impacted. For every positive student the potential quarantine impact can be extremely high especially in the Middle School and High School where students may have up to seven (7) classes.
The COVID quarantine flow chart, as outlined by state and local health departments, is a process that we are required to follow. The flow chart describes several exceptions where students would not be required to be quarantined due to a close contact with a COVID positive person. The exceptions would include ‘wearing a mask’ and ‘vaccination’.
While we have seen a growing number of students and staff make the choice to wear a mask during the school day, we still find ourselves with a large number of students needing to be quarantined due to contact tracing.
In an effort to keep our students in school and reduce the spread of COVID, Mount Vernon City Schools will temporarily require all students and staff members to wear a mask while at school during regular school hours even if a student or staff member is vaccinated. Parents are encouraged to send an additional mask for younger students should a replacement be necessary.
- This temporary mask requirement will begin on Thursday, September 2, 2021
- We will closely monitor the COVID-19 situation during the month of September and adjust accordingly based on the prevalence of COVID within our student body and local community.
- We will encourage frequent mask breaks and use of outdoor learning spaces in a safe and controlled environment.
- This temporary mask requirement will apply to all indoor school day settings. Outdoor venues and extra-curricular activities will not have a masking requirement at this time.
We understand and respect the strong opinions relative to this topic. None of us want to be wearing a mask or continue dealing with the negative impacts of COVID. Please respect our charge to keep students safe and educate students realizing that we can’t perform those vital functions if they are home sick or quarantined.
Current ‘Close Contact’ Students: Due to the fact that everyone will be wearing a mask, we believe it is important to get students back in school. Students who have been assigned to home due to a ‘close contact’ within the school setting may return to school starting Thursday, September 2, 2021. Providing parents complete the ‘Daily Home Screening for Students’ and they are symptom free.
Daily Home Screening - Please check the following daily before sending your child(ren) to school. If any boxes are checked please keep your child(ren) at home and notify the school office to inform them of your absence.
Respectfully Submitted - William Seder Jr.