Community Update - September 25, 2020

 
Dear Parents and Community Members, 
 
I am sure you have heard that the State changed its designation for Oxford County from "Green" to "Yellow". Categorization as “yellow” suggests that the county has an elevated risk of COVID-19 spread and that schools may consider hybrid instructional models as a way to reduce the number of people in schools and classrooms at any one time. Our High School is already using a hybrid model to reduce the number of students in the building and to allow for adequate distancing.  Prek-8 is able to provide safe distancing for those attending in-person given the number of families electing to participate in remote only learning. Of students and staff tested for COVID 19 there are no positive cases yet.  About 1/3 of the COVID 19 cases in Oxford County have occurred in the region of Oxford Hills. 
 
The designation of Yellow does mean that the district needs to implement greater distancing for those learning in-person and this means we will be moving towards a hybrid plan for all students in grades Prek-12. 
 

  • We will continue with our current learning plan through the usual dismissal time on Wednesday, September 30.

 

  • There will be no school for students in all grades October 1-2. 

  

  • Staff will work on transitioning to hybrid learning on Thursday and Friday. 

 

  • Hybrid school schedules will begin for all students on Monday, October 5.  

 
What does a hybrid plan look like?  The administrative team is meeting Monday to iron out some details.  You can expect that each school's population will be divided into two groups.  Each group will attend school in-person two days a week and remote three days a week.  Some students within certain at-risk groups will attend 4 days a week and work remotely only one day a week.  Plans will be similar for all schools but some details may be specific to each school.  
 
Principals will communicate student assignments and schedules to parents next week. 
 
I know we are all disappointed that a shift to hybrid learning must be made.  It is the most prudent thing we can do at this time to keep students and staff healthy and safe.  Our future learning opportunities rest in the hands of our entire community.  Our communities’ behavior and health will determine the opportunities that remain open for our students.  We all need to share in assuming the responsibility for ensuring this insidious virus finds no grasp in the Hills.  We have to do better!
 
 
Rick