May 17, 2021
Published: May 17, 2021
While St. James R-I School District still has small numbers of staff and students impacted by quarantine and COVID-19 issues, the trend data over the past few weeks has been very good. Throughout this school year, our efforts have allowed us to provide and allow community access to activities and events without major impacts resulting from COVID-19. Last week’s safety guidance updates from the CDC strongly emphasize the importance of being vaccinated. This new guidance will hopefully encourage more individuals 12 years and older to consider being vaccinated.
Please note the following St. James R-I School District updates:
- The District will continue to be in Daily Mode Indicator 2, which includes masking requirements and all other present preventative measures until our last half day of school on Wednesday, May 26;
- Student masking will return to parent choice and optional as of Thursday, May 27 (summer vacation);
- Please Note: Modified quarantine procedures will no longer apply and all County and State COVID-19 contact tracing and quarantine guidelines will be in effect;
- All staff, beginning Thursday, May 27, will be encouraged to wear a mask but not required; and
- All staff are encouraged to practice physical/social distancing. As a District, we will be respectful of all student and staff masking choices.
We are asking District staff to adjust to the “mask” optional plans in a professional and appropriate manner that allows everyone to focus on all the good things we have accomplished this school year.
Return to Daily Mode Indicator 1: Traditional School
Summer school will be our first opportunity to return to a traditional school setting, which will include students eating in cafeterias. Administrators will communicate safety protocols as we begin summer school events. Depending on County and School COVID-19 trend data, the District will plan on a “no-mask” requirement for staff and students; masks may be worn if the student/staff member elects. This will be a trial “no-mask” period. If positive cases and quarantines increase beyond a manageable level, masks will be immediately reinstated. Due to federal regulations, face masks are still required on school buses at this time.
I appreciate the support and efforts of the community in helping us to achieve in-person learning this year. As a District, we will focus on our last few school days by successfully closing out this COVID-19 year. We will continue to focus on what is ahead of us, learn from this past year, and look at what we achieved, adjusted, and worked through…and we did that together!