From Mrs. Morrissey...

What will we be doing as a school family to educate our CCS students in the 2020-2021 school year? Well, the short answer is...
ANYTHING we have to in order to stand by each family during these challenging days.
Below, please find two articles from Mrs. Pecina and Mrs. Easom. I can't tell you how many hours we have spent this summer discussing how best to educate your children in the fall. Mrs. Pecina has expressed our heart to you concerning this matter below. Mrs. Easom will explain why we feel that opening a physical school is the very best thing for most of our families.
I have spent the last six weeks in constant study, viewing webinars, reading the science, looking directly at the data, and getting directives (constantly changing directives) from various government authorities and agencies (CDC [see below], Department of Education, Department of Health, FEMA, FACCS...). I'm certain you know that all included a prayer process as well. I did not want to release a plan that changes, and changes again. And the numbers for our county have only added to the importance of making the right decisions for our students, our parents, and our staff.
We have been asked by parents if we will offer a virtual option. Two things have given me strong concerns about offering a virtual track. I believe that the greatest learning and spiritual gains will be made by the vast majority of students in a physical classroom, with a loving, godly, degreed, and experienced teacher. My second concern was for the staff; both for their physical health, as well as their work load. I have shared with the staff where my studies and prayers have led me, and they have answered the call whole-heartedly. We will be ready to open in both formats on August 24th.
So, let's look at the situation for August...
Will we open on August 24th? YES. I see no point in delay. These children need to be in school. The situation does not seem to be improving with Covid-19, so each family will need to decide how best to educate their children in this year. We are going to give you several options. The options are meant to complement each other and to allow students to change from one format to the other with the least difficulty possible. At the end of each quarter, families will be asked to commit to the format that they see as best at that time. This allows both parents and the school to be "nimble" to respond to the factors in real time.
Option 1: Have your child in our physical school.
Option 2: Have you child in our virtual school (for at least quarter 1).
There's more to discuss, but this is the main choice that we need you to pray about, and then we need commitments from our families so that I can properly staff and plan for each option.
I will fill in each option with more details, but here are some facts to help you make this decision.
Option 1: Physical School Attendance
How will CCS be different when we reopen?
Every reasonable step to keep our students and staff safe will be taken. This will include:
We will now have a closed campus. This means that we will have two traffic drop-off/pick-up lines, one in the front and one in the back. Parents will not be allowed to enter the campus. Parent communications will be by phone, Remind, or Zoom. This greatly lessens the potential for exposure on our campus.
Students and staff will have temperature checks in the morning.
If a student seems ill during the school day, they will be sent to an isolation room until they can be picked up.
Cleaning has become a way of life for us all throughout these days. Every adult on campus will now be a part of our cleaning team and this will take place constantly throughout the day. We are pursuing thousands of dollars' worth of cleaning supplies through grants, etc.
I am hiring additional staff to spread out the students as much as possible.
For the first quarter, our secondary teachers will move from room to room, rather than having our students move. Students will not be using lockers. The bells will be turned off. Each class will have scheduled bathroom breaks and will eat lunch in their classroom.
Chapel will be outdoors or by Zoom.
I could continue, but let me simply say that every single procedure in this school is being adjusted to keep your child safe, from how we pass out papers, to how the desks will be positioned, etc.
Every parent will have to sign a covenant with us that they will immediately report any health concerns to us and will not bring their child to school if they even remotely suspect that they could be ill or have been exposed to Covid-19.
Option 2: Attending CCS Virtually
We are working diligently to be able to open a ZOOM window in every classroom from K5 and above. Unlike the emergency actions we took for the 4th quarter, we have time and are planning heavily for teacher and student success in this environment. Families will need to sign an agreement in order to enroll their children for this option. You must have reliable home internet. EACH child will need their own dedicated device to complete their work and be present through Zoom. An adult must be present with the child in the home. The younger the child is, the more responsibility the parent will have to agree to in regards to turning in assignments. Again, each quarter, you will have the option to have your child rejoin the physical classroom.
Now, there are at least 2 other possible scenarios.
Scenario 1: A student is enrolled in the physical school but they have or have been exposed to Covid-19. Well, since our virtual school will already be established, they will need to stay home, self-isolate for at least two weeks, and when they are well enough, they may attend school virtually (for which they will be marked present). This should allow the child to experience the least disruption in their educational process as possible. If this occurs, parents will be informed, the class will be moved to another space, and the room will be deep cleaned by a professional cleaning crew.
Scenario 2: I have to tell you that it is possible that we will experience a complete evacuation of the physical campus again. I'm sure that you understand that no one can predict what will happen next. Not only is it our complete heart to open the physical school, we (each DOE numbered entity) are under an emergency order (2020-EO-06) to get every school in this state open. I am sure that you are watching the news. The school superintendents of Dade and Broward are pushing back against that order. Now, they have a much bigger problem than we do. We only have to decide if we can keep our students and staff safe on our physical (closed) campus. That does mean it is possible for us to open without them. But I want you to know that so much changes daily, that this is a possibility with a month to go. I have no way to predict what DOE order may come down during this time.
Next week, we will begin to ask you to commit to which enrollment option that you desire. We will begin to send out the commitment forms and structure for the physical and virtual school opening on August 24th. In either format, we will fight for your child during these confusing times to feel loved, safe, and served.
I have received so many emails from our parents saying such enCOURAGEing things over these months. I have also been told that my communications are more personal these days. While I will always attempt to send you professional communications, please hear my heart.
I have cried so many tears for you and your children. I miss you more than I can write. On behalf of the entire staff, we look forward to pressing your child forward academically, and speaking the words of eternal life to them in any format necessary.
In His Love, and Mine,
Terri Morrissey