As we head into our first weekend of the autumn season, I want to provide you with our latest thinking in this weekly COVID update. After moving into a regular Stage 2 this week, we were able to provide in-person contracted services for some of our students in greatest need of additional support. We will continue in this same model next week.
Also, we will continue to monitor data on the dashboard provided by Washington State Department of Health, which reflects infection rates from two weeks prior. We will remain cautiously optimistic, monitor the trend closely, and if all other considerations are favorable, our hope is that we can gradually move to aspects of the next stage soon. We are also monitoring evolving mask requirements and recommendations from the Department of Labor and Industries and our ability to procure the number necessary to support a safe and healthy re-entry. The supply chains for many of these essential items remain challenging. Again, all families and staff will have ample notice about any status change that provides increased in-person instruction so preparations can be made.
Earlier this week, I reviewed two images that I believe provide significant insight for all of us as we look toward the future. The first was from a New York Times article. It shows a significant jump in the number of confirmed cases in the U.S. in recent days and compares the U.S. with Canada, Europe and Japan.
The second image was shared by Seattle and King County public health officer, Dr. Jeffrey Duchin. You’ve heard me say we are One Northshore – a connected community. This image shows how interconnected we are, especially as it relates to this pandemic. When it is safe to return to hybrid or full in-person instruction, we must remain accountable to each other.
On a related Northshore Learns 3.0 note, I mentioned in my Thursday Thoughts, staff from several departments have been preparing for the season of inclement weather. In the coming days, we will be sending more information about how we can continue the learning process during power outages or other natural disasters or challenges. As we know, a great deal of learning can happen offline and outside the classroom.
Lastly, I will be continuing my meetings with student stakeholder groups, beginning with our Seniors, the Class of 2021, in the coming weeks. Stay tuned and look for more information in the coming days.
I will send another COVID update next Friday. In the meantime, enjoy our first autumn weekend and stay safe.
Michelle Reid, Ed.D.
Northshore School District