Parent Letter for March 13, 2020

March 13, 2020

Dear Plato Families,

Since the Coronavirus COVID-19 has made its way to Missouri, we want you to know about our plans.  We have no positive COVID-19 cases reported in our district. This is a precautionary measure to ensure learning continues, should we have to close school in the future due to the Coronavirus.  We will do our best to ensure that the education of our students will continue through the use of technology and take home materials if we are required to be temporarily closed.

Who decides if a school should close due Coronavirus COVID-19?

Closing a school would most likely be at the recommendation of public health authorities in the region or state, or at the direction of elected officials. It is also possible that the Board of Education and I would make the decision to close school.

How will you inform us if a school is closing?

We will use the same methods to announce an individual school closing as we do for snow days.

What should my child do to prepare?

  1. If your child has been assigned a Chromebook, make sure your child brings the Chromebook home every single afternoon.  A closing could occur overnight.

  2. Have your child bring home textbooks or other books that they are assigned every night.  Teachers may provide additional resources and instructions regarding materials for students to bring home.

What is the school doing to prepare?

  1. We are exploring the options of using virtual education as a resource for our families.  Let us know if you do or do not have access to the Internet (wifi) by completing the survey at: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1a6uaoB9ttxnENOeJ21PgLMlf6J2_DKQMU0uPO5cYHXM/prefill  We realize that not all families will be able to access the survey, but hope that most will at least have access via phone to provide us with information that will help make plans should we need to close school temporarily.

  2. Our school nurses and staff are continuing to work with students to promote good hygiene and to keep everyone healthy and safe. We are also working with our custodians to ensure our schools receive thorough cleanings throughout the school day and after school lets out that follow CDC guidelines. We ask that you help us in reinforcing healthy practices at home with children.

What if we traveled over Spring Break?

  1. If you were on a cruise or traveled over Spring Break to a country with a Warning Level 3 Travel Health Notice (widespread, ongoing transmission, including China, Japan, Iran, South Korea, Venezuela and the countries listed in Europe at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/coronavirus-europe), please contact the school prior to attending Monday. The countries and information may change, so please check the CDC’s website at: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices#travel-notice-definitions.

What can we do to help?

  1. It is very important to keep your child home if he/she is experiencing flu-like symptoms (fever, sore throat, cough, body aches, headaches, diarrhea, vomiting), and keep them home until they are fever-free for at least 24 hours without fever-reducing medicine.

  2. Remind your children and family members to always cover their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or elbow.

  3. Proper handwashing is crucial in preventing the spread of germs. This means washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds after touching your face, blowing your nose, using the restroom, and before you eat.

  4. Remind your children to avoid touching their mouth, eyes and nose.

  5. Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects such as tables, door knobs, bathroom handles, cell phones, remotes, etc.

  6. Serve as a role model, keep calm and only share age-appropriate facts about COVID-19. You may check the CDC for updated information on the COVID-19 disease at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

  7. Be adaptable to change. We recognize that virtual education is not ideal; however, we will do our best to continue to effectively educate your child. Remember, it’s only temporary.

We are keeping in daily contact with local health officials, who have the latest information from the CDC, as we monitor the situation. We will let you know if there are any developments that affect our schools. The Plato School District has an action plan in place if needed, and we are collaborating with the County Health Departments, MoDHSS, and CDC, and follow guidance from these agencies and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.  Thank you for your support and understanding as we work together to keep learning happening for our students!

Sincerely,

Kim Hawk, Superintendent

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