March 18, 2021
Good afternoon HBR Parents and Students,
The sixth version of our 2020-2021 Learning Plan is being released after receiving additional joint guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) on March 9, 2021. Social distancing for in-person instruction is now defined as 3 to 6 feet for students and fully vaccinated staff. The redefinition of social distancing for in-person instruction enables us to offer a full instructional day to those students interested in attending school in-person.
Beginning Tuesday April 6, 2021, we will transition to a full day of learning for all students in grades K-12. The school day will utilize an 8:30 am to 3:00 pm start/end time. Students who continue to participate in full-remote learning will have synchronous learning during instructional blocks and asynchronous learning during non-instructional periods of time. Each building will be sending more information about revised daily schedules by the end of the day on Friday, March 19th. This will include what a day in the life of a student looks like in each building, providing further insight.
We remain committed to providing you with notification of any positive COVID-19 cases in our schools. We are happy to report that our last positive case was on February 1, 2021. Keep up the great work everyone!
As we have done with previous version updates, we are providing the overarching highlights of the changes in our document:
Social distancing for in-person instruction is now defined as 3 to 6 feet for students and fully vaccinated staff. The 2020-2021 Learning Plan language has been revised to include “at least 3 feet” in each section describing social distancing guidelines.
The redefinition of social distancing for in-person instruction enables us to offer a full instructional day to those students interested in attending school in-person. The school day will utilize an 8:30 am to 3:00 pm start/end time.
Those families who desire to continue utilizing full-remote learning may continue to do so. Those families who desire to make a switch in their learning location, that is either from full-remote to in-person or in-person to full-remote, will be able to do so. It is important to note that the expectations for being online for synchronous learning at HBRES and HBRMS does increase for our full-time remote learners, with the expectation increasing for some of our full-time remote learners at HBRHS. Additional communication surrounding how to make a change in learning location will be shared by each building.
On January 28, 2021, Hinckley-Big Rock CUSD #429 entered into an agreement with the DeKalb County Health Department to be able to administer BinaxNOW COVID-19 Antigen Testing. We have administered 24 tests thus far to staff and staff members’ children. We will begin offering free BinaxNOW testing to our students who exhibit symptoms on a voluntary basis. Parents interested in having their child(ren) tested must accompany the child(ren) to the testing site and complete the consent form. Drive thru testing will occur Monday through Friday at Hinckley-Big Rock High School in the West lot near door #4 between 7:45-8:30 am or by appointment. To schedule an appointment, contact Nurse Shea via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 815-286-3430. Results of the testing will be back within an hour along with any exclusion requirements. This optional testing will be available for students beginning on Monday, March 29th.
Symptoms that exclude staff or students from attending in-person have been altered by IDPH. The new set of symptoms that warrant exclusion from in-person attendance are fever (100.4o or higher), new cough, shortness of breath, fatigue from unknown cause, muscle or body aches from unknown cause, new onset of moderate to severe headache, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting, or diarrhea.
IDPH and CDC no longer recommend screenings, including temperature checks, to be completed at the building level as long as self-certification is occurring before arrival to school. Throughout our entire year of completing temperature checks, we have had zero instances in which a student arrived at school and had a temperature above 100.4 degrees. With the increased number of students reporting to school at one time, we will no longer be conducting temperature checks before students board our buses or enter our buildings. We ask that you continue to screen and temperature check your students daily and record the results utilizing Pick Up Patrol. Any student who arrives at school without Pick Up Patrol being completed will be screened and temperature checked. We ask that you stay diligent in completing these daily screenings, including a temperature check, at home and record the results in Pick Up Patrol. This will greatly aid us in our ability to focus on meeting the social-emotional and academic needs of our students.
There is a new section in our learning plan that describes the CDC and IDPH travel recommendations for international travel (See page 12). For the safety of our staff and students, HBR encourages that staff or students who travel internationally follow the CDC travel recommendation of staying home for the 7-10 day period and we will provide virtual instruction to all in-person learners for the 7-10 day period following any international travel.
The final alterations to our 2020-2021 Learning Plan include updating the “Creation of and updating of document” section (pp. 28-29) and the “Resources” section (p. 30).
The updated 2020-2021 Learning Plan can be found by visiting https://5il.co/idyq. If you have already read any of the previous versions, we ask that you read and review the updated sections as noted earlier. If you have not read our plan yet, we encourage you to do so.
After reading and reviewing our updated plan, if you have any questions about our plan, you are encouraged to start by contacting the appropriate personnel as described below:
Questions related to schools
Hinckley-Big Rock Elementary School - Julie Melnyk - email@example.com or (815) 286-3400
Hinckley-Big Rock Middle School - Jeff Strouss - firstname.lastname@example.org or (630) 556-4190
Hinckley-Big Rock High School - Jay Brickman - email@example.com or (815) 286-7501
Questions related to student services district-wide
Student Services Department - Jessica Sonntag - firstname.lastname@example.org or (815) 286-7578
Questions related to our overall plan and requirements as set forth by the Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Public Health
Superintendent - Travis McGuire - email@example.com or (815) 286-7578
Dr. Travis L. McGuire
HBR CUSD #429