In this issue:
Superintendent highlights information re: quarantine, new mandates, labor shortage
We are excited to have students back in person. I have been visiting classes and I am impressed to see students engaged in challenging lessons and actively involved in their learning while adhering to safety mitigations. As the new school year unfolds, I want to highlight a few key items.
When a positive COVID-19 case is identified at school or school events/athletics, our staff follow the Illinois Department of Public Health’s guidance when determining who is a close contact and needs to quarantine. Please note that, under the current guidance, when someone is fully vaccinated and not showing symptoms, they are not required to quarantine. This is an important factor to consider for those who are not yet vaccinated against COVID-19.
New Mandates Re: Masks Indoors, Vaccine Requirements For School Employees
On Aug. 26, Gov. Pritzker announced new state mandates regarding indoor masking, educational employee vaccination and testing requirements.
The indoor masking order, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status, begins Monday, Aug. 30, and the requirement for educational employees to begin their COVID-19 vaccine regimen is Sept. 5. All educational employees must get a COVID-19 vaccination or submit to testing weekly or more frequently if ordered by the local health department.
We will comply with these mandates.
We will communicate with our staff on the specifics of how we will verify staff vaccination status and coordinate weekly testing as appropriate.
Due to a national labor shortage, we are experiencing shortages in a variety of areas, including contracted busing, custodial and food service. We are working closely with our third-party providers to address the impact of these shortages.
Throughout the Chicago suburbs, there is a shortage of trained, licensed school bus drivers. During this busing staff shortage, wait times may be extended. Unfortunately, there have been situations recently where a driver was unavailable, resulting in the cancellation of a route. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. We have emphasized with our transportation provider, First Student, that we maintain our expectation and standards of safe and timely transportation. Making sure students are on time for their classes is our priority. We appreciate the bus drivers who work hard each day to make this happen.
First Student has taken the following steps to improve the situation:
Our administrators are coordinating additional resources to supplement our morning and afternoon bus routes. For example, we partnered with another vendor to provide additional buses for after-school activities, effective today.
Thank you for your patience and grace.
We are pleased to have students fully in-person for the 8-period day, and each day we focus on providing a safe learning environment. Thank you for your support and understanding.
David F. Larson, Ed.D.
Info Re: COVID-19 close contact, quarantine and vaccination status
Please review the following information regarding COVID-19 close contact, quarantine and sharing vaccination status.
Close contact, quarantine information
When a positive COVID-19 case is identified at school or school events/athletics, our staff follow the Illinois Department of Public Health’s guidance when determining who is a close contact and needs to quarantine. This guidance is posted on our health services page on each school’s website under the Parent/Family tab. Please note that, under the current guidance, when someone is fully vaccinated and not showing symptoms, they are not required to quarantine.
We welcome you to share your vaccination status with your school’s health services office. Please send a screenshot or copy of the vaccination card to your school’s health services office:
The vaccination status information will be kept confidential. Sharing this information before a possible COVID-19 exposure will help school staff determine if your student should be quarantined.
GPS Aug. 31 events: Two early childhood webinars to teach coping skills for young children
Social Skills and Anxiety Solutions for the Early Child: Start Strong with Janine Halloran at noon and 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 31, via Zoom. Go to glenbardgps.org for the link to these two webinars.
Parent shares takeaway from program about positive approach
On Aug. 19, the Glenbard Parent Series hosted authors Chris Thurber and Hank Weisinger in a webinar titled The Unlikely Art of Parental Pressure: A Positive Approach to Pushing Your Child to Be Their Best Self.
Parent Ami Chambers shared this takeaway after the webinar: “I appreciated the suggestions to reframe comments I make to my son because even if well-meaning, they may not be received how I had hoped. The reminder to focus on effort rather than outcome is always helpful. The psychologist suggested that parents should have reasonable and customized expectations specific to the child’s interests, abilities, and personality. To summarize, it’s ok to have high expectations as long as the focus of encouragement is on effort and personal best, rather than competition and perfection.”
A recording of the student directed question and answer session is available at this link.
A recording of the webinar can be found at this link.
596 Crescent Blvd
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137