MAINE SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE DISTRICT #35
Serving the communities of Eliot, South Berwick & Rollinsford
180 Depot Road Eliot, ME 03903 (207) 439-2438
John S. Caverly, M.Ed.
Superintendent of Schools
July 27, 2020
As many of you are aware, the Maine Department of Education has released their safety recommendations for the return to school in the fall. Critical components of that plan include the requirement of staff and students to wear face-covering/masks during the instructional day, and creating space in classrooms for social distancing. Using the information shared by the Department of Education, our district has been working to create a plan that provides the safest environment possible for our students and staff and allows for meaningful in-person instruction.
I am contacting families today and asking that you complete the survey in the link below. Again, this is a non-binding survey developed to better understand the needs of our community, as well as gather input on the potential plans we are creating. It is the district’s hope that we will have our plan developed and shared with the community by the end of next week. We are working very hard to develop a plan that has two options for families. Once the plan has been developed, each school will be reaching out to families directly, asking them to commit to a plan.
On Friday, July 31st, the State of Maine will release the state’s first color-coded COVID Risk system. The Maine Department of Education has developed a color-coded system that will be applied county by county as assessments are made about the safety of the conditions in each county for students to be in school buildings. The categories are:
Red: The county has been identified as high risk for the spread of COVID-19 and in-person instruction should not be conducted.
Yellow: The county has been identified as having elevated risk for the spread of COVID-19 and hybrid instruction models should be adopted.
Green: The county has been identified as having a relatively low risk of spread of COVID-19 and in-person instruction can be adopted – although an RSU or District may opt for hybrid instruction if its buildings or readiness make adhering to the Required Health and Safety Measures for All Schools a challenge.
I appreciate the partnership our community shares and want to thank you. This is a difficult time for all of us. Each of us is affected in different ways. Honestly, as the Superintendent of Schools, this is a heart-wrenching process. The reality is that I cannot create a plan that works for everyone while maintaining the State and Department of Education Guidelines. Safety must be our top priority. With that being said, we are hard at work creating a sustainable plan that offers families alternatives while keeping the safety of our students, staff, and community at the center of the decision-making process.
Please take a moment to complete the survey, as it is critical for our planning. Your input is very important.