March 12, 2020
Dear KPBSD students, families, and staff,
I hope your spring break has been restorative, with positive memories. Most of our schools have this week off, but the district leadership team has been meeting to respond to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. We are continuing to work closely and take direction about the COVID-19 response from the State Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS), the Department of Education and Early Development (DEED), Office of the Governor, and the CDC. Your safety in our schools is a primary concern.
KPBSD will close all 42 schools to students March 16-20, 2020, to assist with social distancing, and slowing the COVID-19 infection curve in our diverse communities.
KPBSD staff will receive an update about when to report to work by the end of the day on Friday, March 13, 2020, through district email.
CDC and state DHSS recommendations directly influenced this difficult decision. Additional updates about the COVID-19 districtwide closure and subsequent actions will be sent to families and staff via SchoolMessenger. Kindly monitor the KPBSD website, Mobile app, Facebook, and Twitter pages for updates. The best place to learn about COVID-19 is the state website, or the CDC.
New “Symptom-Free” Schools Protocol
When schools reopen, and until the end of the school year, all KPBSD schools will adopt a “Symptom-Free” School Protocol* for students and staff. Children and staff should not be at schools or school activities if any of these symptoms are present:
- Temperature of 100 or greater
- Constantly runny nose
for pre-existing conditions will be determined by the nurse or administrator.
The Symptom Free Schools Protocol includes the school day, co-curriculars, and sports.
Questions we have received throughout the week are primarily: When do students and staff stay home? How will education delivery happen if schools close? What if I traveled out of Alaska over spring break? In addition, our team has focused on many other aspects of our continuity of operations plan, and keeping schools calm, healthy, and a place of learning. Responses to these questions and others will be posted Friday on our dedicated COVID-19 and KPBSD webpage, and updated as new information is available.
This is a lot of information, and we will be in close communication during this time of uncertainty. We urge you to do what is best for your family, and reach out to your school or the district with school related questions. Our communities are strong, and we will weather this storm.
Superintendent of Schools
- COVID-19 and KPBSD webpage
- State of Alaska (DHSS) COVID-19 webpage
- CDC Coronavirus Disease 2019 webpage