District 64 decided on Friday morning to close schools to students beginning Monday, March 16 and move classes online (E-learning) for Tuesday, March 17 through Thursday, March 19 in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Spring Break begins on Friday, March 20. The state has mandated schools stay closed through March 30. A decision on whether to return to school Tuesday, March 31 or continue with E-learning will be made on Thursday, March 26. More information will be coming in regard to how E-learning will play out next week. Meanwhile, parents are encouraged to start planning ahead for child care should the District remain closed following spring break.
While students will not be in attendance next week, District 64 schools will remain open to staff, and there will at least be someone parents can contact at each school throughout the week with questions. District 64 already has emergency days built into the calendar, so the move to close schools on Monday does not extend the school year into the summer.
At this time there is no known case of COVID-19 in our learning community.
On Thursday afternoon, the district cancelled all out-of-school activities involving students and parents. The move means that until further notice activities including field trips, sporting events, concerts, musicals, plays, clubs, PTO/PTA meetings and parent-teacher conferences are all cancelled.
The decision to close our buildings to students was a public health precaution in keeping with the recommendations from the CDC, the Illinois Department of Public Health and Governor Pritzker. On Friday afternoon, the governor closed schools through March 30 and advised avoiding large gatherings in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Thursday's decision was made in conjunction with the other Maine Township school districts including Community Consolidated School District 62, East Maine District 63, Pennoyer Elementary School District 79, and Maine Township High School District 207. These districts have met several times over the past few days working together to reach a consensus on the decision.
Beyond the Bell: The Beyond the Bell program will continue until the end of the day today and will be closed next week as well.
Free lunch service: District 64 is partnering with its onsite food service management partner, Quest Food Management Services, to provide two distributions to parents of students in the free lunch program.
School access: Schools will be open for parents to pick up medication if needed. School nurses will be in the schools on Monday, March 16. Buildings will also be accessible during regular school hours Monday through Thursday for students who may have forgotten educational materials at their school.
In letters to parents and staff members, Superintendent Eric Olson asked the District 64 community to be positive, patient and resilient through the process.