Dear District 99 Students and Families:
As you may know, COVID-19 metrics are continuing to worsen. Our Community Transmission Level continues to be “substantial.” The weekly “youth count trend” increased over 56% this week after a 62% increase last week. In addition, positivity rates for our District 99 community have nearly doubled in the past week, growing from 7.1% to 12.1%; see other metrics, including rising numbers of confirmed and possible cases, on our updates page here.
As a result of these metrics, District 99 will continue to follow a Fully Remote Learning schedule through at least November 30.
It is my responsibility to determine if and when to bring students back into our school buildings. As community transmission increases, our ability to prevent the spread at school diminishes, even as we follow all of the health measures closely. I meet with the health department weekly in order to decide what schedule we must follow. During this time of ever-worsening metrics and increased risk of COVID transmission at school, I believe that the safest approach is to continue with a fully remote schedule. (NOTE: Small groups of students, including Transition 99, the Access and Connections programs, the EL Cohort, DGN/DGS Multi Needs, and ED Self-Contained programs, will continue to meet in person under strict safety protocols.)
My goal is to have students return to our buildings for in-person learning; however, I will not risk the health of our students, staff, and community.
I ask everyone to do their part in containing and reducing the spread of COVID-19. Please postpone gatherings until a later date and follow the safety protocols at all times. Only by working together and reversing the trends can we reach our goal to return to in-person learning.
Dr. Hank Thiele
District 99 Superintendent