Superintendent addresses questions about fall school year
HANCOCK — With the 2021-22 school year set to begin on Tuesday, Sept. 7, many parents and guardians have had questions regarding the upcoming school year.
In a July 6 email, Superintendent Steve Patchin addressed both questions and circulating rumors he hopes to quell, particularly in reference to COVID-19 testing and vaccines.
The School Board and the building leadership, he stated, are planning to open under the following conditions:
– Facial coverings will not be required to attend our school for any students or staff. We will respect those that choose to continue to wear facial coverings.
– We will not require our students or staff to be vaccinated as a condition to attend our school or participate in sports or after hours programming.
– We will not require students participating in sports or those that have not been vaccinated to be tested for COVID-19 on a weekly basis (or anytime).
We will continue:
– With our upgraded cleaning protocols.
– With our broad implementation of hand sanitizing stations.
– With airflow strategies using our upgraded HVAC software/CO2 sensor systems.
– With encouraging healthy habits like handwashing and covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze.
– With our use of outdoor space for classes when available, including classroom breaks.
– Offer live streaming of all our sporting events for those unable to attend.
– With our policy of staying home sick if you have symptoms of illness until you are 24 hours free of symptoms.
– With our outdoor high school graduation and parade.
“These protocols will also help us mitigate annual flu and cold seasons,” Patchin added, “providing a healthy atmosphere for our students to learn to grow.”
Hancock Schools has been operating its Northern Lights Summer Learning/Adventure Programs and several sports camps utilizing these strategies since June 21, Patchin stated. Hundreds of students from throughout the area are currently participating in these face-to-face programs in the school buildings each week.
The district’s environment continues to be healthy and safe, he stated. Administration and staff are currently, successfully, practicing the Fall back-to-normal.
“Please continue to share your concerns with our school board members and our district leadership team,” Patchin suggested. “Our goal is to limit any misinformation and/or misunderstandings by ensuring you have current and factual information.”