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All Coronavirus-Related Communication

March 18, 2020

Dear Parents of District 189 Students,

All 1st-12th grade students are required to pick up school-issued chromebooks from the school they attend on March 19 or March 20 to continue their learning during this mandated school closure. Learning activities are available on our website and have been distributed by teachers. These chromebooks will allow students access to the Clever Portal, Google Classroom and other educational resources in order to keep up with essential coursework from home. Once we return to school, the devices must be returned to the school to be used in classrooms.

Elementary and middle school students must be accompanied by an adult to check out a chromebook. Chromebooks and power supplies will be available at your child’s school on Thursday, March 19, 2020 and Friday, March 20, 2020 with the following schedule. The child must check-out a chromebook from his/her school. If they have not received their learning plan instructions from their teacher, students may also pick them up at this time.

James Avant Elementary

Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

Grades 1 and 2:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 3, 4 and 5:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

        Gordon Bush Elementary

        Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

        Grades 1 and 2:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

        Grades 3, 4 and 5:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

Dunbar Elementary

Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

Grades 1 and 2:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 3 and 4:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

        Annette Officer Elementary

        Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

        Grades 1 and 2:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

        Grades 3 and 4:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

Katie Wright Elementary

Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

Grades 1 and 2:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 3 and 4:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

 

 

Lincoln Middle School

Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

Grades 5 and 6:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 7 and 8:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

        Mason Clark Middle School

        Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

        Grades 5 and 6:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

        Grades 7 and 8:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

East St. Louis Senior High School

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Grades 11 and 12:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 11 and 12:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

 

Friday, March 20, 2020

Grades 9 and 10:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

Grades 9 and 10:  12:00PM to 2:00PM

        Wyvetter Younge Alternative Center

        Thursday and Friday (March 19 & 20)

        Any Grade:  9:00AM to 11:00AM

        Any Grade:  12:00PM to 2:00PM


Specific locations for pickup at the schools will be posted at the main entrance of the campus.

East St. Louis School District 189 WILL NOT be supplying internet service for home use. Charter/Spectrum and other vendors are currently providing temporary, free Internet and WiFi service to homes with students. Below is contact information for those providing free services. 

            Charter/Spectrum       1-844-488-8395

            Verizon                        1-800-922-0204

AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile are advertising reduced rates for WiFi or increased data usage for free.

Families are expected to keep devices fully secure and in good working condition. Should problems arise with a chromebook after it has been received (ie. missing keys, broken charger, cracked screen, etc), please contact your building principal via email.  Principals’ email addresses can be found on the school district website under the heading “Our Schools” - http://www.estl189.com 

When chromebooks are picked up, please follow recommended guidelines for social distancing and health guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.  
  • Please cover your cough and sneezes either with a tissue or with the inside of your elbow.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Put distance between yourself and other people (recommended 6 ft).

Some districts in our area are not able to provide this one-to-one chromebook service to their students.  The East St. Louis School District is pleased to serve our students by creating ways for children to access educational resources while at home during the Coronavirus Pandemic School Closing. 

Sincerely,

Arthur Culver

3.18.2020 Letter for Chromebook Pickup 

_______

March 18, 2020

Dear School District 189 Staff,

On behalf of the School District 189 Board of Education, I want to extend my sincere gratitude for your courageous service to students and families during these challenging times. We have been able to move with great speed in providing services to students and families thanks to your commitment, compassion and diligent efforts. 

I am proud of the response made by my cabinet, leadership team, principals, teachers and appreciate their leadership, creativity and flexibility. Many hours have been spent by teams and individuals for planning, monitoring, and adjusting to this crisis. All this work has been done with the best interest of our students at the forefront of every decision. Here is a brief highlight of some of our outstanding work:

  • With the assistance of Illinois Central, Chartwells and numerous district staff, thousands of meals are being provided daily to our students. 
  • Teachers and leaders have dedicated numerous hours to rapidly provide learning packets and online instructional activities for students.
  • The Technology Department, high school math department, Blueprint Math Fellows, security staff and substitutes have worked tirelessly to prepare for the distribution of chromebooks to support student learning.
  • Staff from the English as a Second Language (ESL) Department are devoting additional hours translating all correspondence to ESL families and helping them navigate support services during these confusing times.
  • The Human Resources Department is providing constant communication to staff regarding how this closure impacts their employment, updating staff addresses as necessary and processing new employees.
  • The Maintenance and Operations Department are carefully working to ensure deep cleaning and disinfecting of our facilities and equipment so that students and staff remain safe.
  • The Security Department continues to monitor entry and exit points to our buildings as well as go beyond the call of duty to support principals and district activities during closure.
  • The Finance Department is working tirelessly to ensure that payroll is processed and bills are paid in a timely manner.

It is humbling to see the best parts of the human spirit come together as a team for the benefit of our community and students. Thank you for all the efforts you are making. We appreciate your dedication.

In order to provide high quality support for our students during these unprecedented times, it is imperative that we continue business as usual to the best of our ability.  This requires all staff to be on call to respond to phone calls and emails when needed. With that in mind, I also want to share that, if you are asked to work, whether remotely or on-site, you are expected to respond and fulfill assigned responsibilities. If you are called upon to work and are unable to do so, for whatever reason, notify your supervisor that you are using a vacation, personal or sick leave day.

Please read the attached, one-page joint statement of the Office of Governor JB Pritzker, Illinois Education Association, Illinois Federation of Teachers, Illinois Association of School Administrators, Illinois Principals Association, and Illinois State Board of Education. A copy can also be viewed here: https://www.isbe.net/Documents/Joint-Statement-20200317.pdf

We are blessed that as of today, there are no confirmed COVID-19 cases involving School District 189 students or staff. As we continue during school closure, please use caution and remember to follow the advice of health officials, such as social distancing, frequent and thorough handwashing and other measures to ensure your family’s health. Thank you for being part of the East St. Louis School District 189 team. We will continue to empower excellence during these challenging times.

Sincerely, 

 Arthur R. Culver, Superintendent

3.18.2020 Message to Staff

3.17.2020 Joint Statement

 

_______

 

March 17, 2020

Joint statement from the Office of Governor JB Pritzker, Illinois Education Association, Illinois Federation of Teachers, Illinois Association of School Administrators, Illinois Principals Association, and Illinois State Board of Education. 

3.17.2020 Joint Statement

_______

 

March 14, 2020

Charter will provide free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi to households with children in school or college who do not currently have a subscription service. The program will be available for 60 days, beginning March 16. To enroll, call 1-844-488-8395. Installation fees will be waived. During this time, Charter will also open its Wi-Fi hotspots for public use.

_______

 

March 13, 2020

To read this information in Spanish, please click here: Spanish message about coronavirus

 

_______

March 13, 2020

Dear School District 189 Parents and Staff:

Today, President Trump declared a national State of Emergency in response to the coronavirus. Additionally, Governor Pritzker made an executive order to close all K-12 Illinois public and private schools for student attendance from March 17-30, 2020 due to the public health crisis.

School District 189 continues to operate with an abundance of caution and care to minimize the exposure of COVID-19. We take the safety of our students, staff and community very seriously. The virus has not sickened children as readily as older adults; however, there is concern that children can transmit the virus even if they have mild or no symptoms. Furthermore, we have many children and youth in the community with weakened immune systems due to asthma or other illnesses. The additional immediate concern is what is termed as “community spread.” We all share the responsibility to prevent this pandemic from affecting our community. Because of this, we have made the difficult decision to cancel school for all students effective Monday, March 16, 2020 until further notice. 

The coronavirus situation is a serious matter that requires everyone to stay calm and use sound judgment as we work our way through this together. The most important actions anyone can take to reduce the risk of COVID-19 are to wash hands frequently, cover your nose/mouth when coughing or sneezing with a tissue or flexed elbow, and avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms. As you consider activities for your children during school closure, we encourage you to practice “social distancing” - the act of limiting engagement with large groups of people. While there are no known cases of COVID-19 currently in St. Clair County, Governor Pritzker cautioned, “Don’t be fooled into thinking that your community is immune.”

The below resources are essential information you need to know in the transition to school closure.

Grab and Go Student Meals 

Grab and go student meals will be provided during school closure. In order to limit large groups of people gathering, meals will be delivered in a new method. Details include:

  • Meals will be provided daily Monday through Friday, beginning March 16, 2020. Meals will not be provided March 30-April 3 (Spring Break).
  • Meals will only be available from 9:00am - 11:00am at schools and participating centers.
  • Meals will include one day of breakfast and lunch provided in one bag. 
  • Meals will be available for pick-up and taken home to eat.
  • Meals can be picked up by students or their families. Parents/guardians may pick up to 4 meals at a time.
  • Meals will be delivered via school bus to a number of locations in the area, including all schools, some bus stops and some after-school community centers. Brief bus stops for Grab and Go Meals include: Brief Bus Stop Locations   Centers (serving 9-11am) include:
    • All 10 schools
    • John DeShields Community Center: 1235 McCasland Avenue
    • Orr Weathers Community Center: 1400 East Broadway, Building 12
    • Griffin Center: 2630 Lincoln
    • Forest Village: 4313 Forest Blvd
    • Roosevelt Center: 1328 North 44th Street
    • Sinai Family Life Center: 1200 St. Louis Avenue
    • Mary Brown Center: 606 South 15th Street
    • Lessie Bates Davis Neighborhood House: 1200 North 13th Street
    • Christian Activity Center: 540 North 6th Street
    • Jackie Joyner Kersee Center: 101 Jackie Joyner Kersee Circle

Education

Families, students, leaders, teachers and staff are concerned anytime students are away from school for an extended period of time. For this reason, the Curriculum and Student Support Services departments have compiled a list of resources and websites for students and their families to engage in learning activities. Please use the links provided and activities shared by teachers to keep students engaged in academic and social emotional activities during our school closure. Academic Resources and Links  Social Emotional Learning School Closure Resources

Information and Updates

School District 189 will continue to provide communication to families and staff. Please frequently check for updated information on our website, www.estl189.com or on social media. We can be found @estl189 on Facebook and Twitter. Additionally, we will send robocalls to families and staff.

Physical Health

St. Clair County Health Department: http://www.health.co.st-clair.il.us/

For general questions about COVID-19 and Illinois’ response and guidance, call 1-800-889-3931 or email DPH.SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV.

Emotional Health

If your child is in crisis or struggling emotionally, call the Care Line at 1-800-345-9049 for support.

Essential Community Services

Need Additional Resources? Call 211. United Way 2-1-1 of Illinois and Missouri is a 24/7 connection to resources and agencies near you.

 

School District 189 schools who are listed as polling places will remain open to serve the public on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.

We know that schools are a place of comfort for our students. We recognize this may be an increased time of anxiety and stress for adults and children alike. However, we are a strong nation and community and we will successfully navigate these difficult times as we have in the past. Thank you for your continued support. Stay safe.

Sincerely,

Arthur R. Culver, Superintendent

________

 

March 12, 2020

IHSA announced today that it is cancelling the remaining winter state tournaments to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. https://www.ihsa.org/News-Media/Announcements/ihsa-cancels-remaining-winter-state-tournaments-over-covid-19-pandemic

To check the status of cancellations with IESA events due to coronavirus, please go to: https://www.iesa.org/news/2019-2020/COVID2.asp 

 

_________

March 12, 2020

Dear School District 189 Parents, Volunteers, Community Partners, Contractors and Visitors,

NEW INFORMATION TODAY: Due to the current pandemic health crisis, we regret to inform you that volunteer services are suspended until further notice. We appreciate your support of our schools and look forward to continuing to partner with you in the future. If you are an individual or entity with a written contract or Memorandum of Understanding to provide academic, therapeutic or enrichment services, your services are not suspended. Please read and adhere to the correspondence below.

Our number one priority is the health and safety of our students, families and staff.  East St. Louis School District 189 continues to closely monitor updates and guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as other local, state and federal agencies regarding the Coronavirus COVID-19.

In the past two days, Superintendent Arthur Culver provided communication to parents and staff about COVID-19.  You can find this information on our website at https://www.estl189.com under Featured News and Headlines – Coronavirus Message. This communication will periodically be updated, so I encourage you to regularly check here for new information.

In particular, please be aware of our stringent travel restrictions. These are in place to protect the health and safety of all our students and community members – including you. We ask that parents, volunteers and visitors abide by the same standards we ask of our staff and students. Here are summary highlights taken from the March 11 Q & A communication that is highly relevant for you to know:

  1. What are the restrictions for students and staff members who travel for school activities or as part of work? Effective March 10, 2020, School District 189 will restrict travel to 200 miles from the School District 189 Board of Education building. Travel is restricted to within the state of Illinois.
  2. What about spring break or other scheduled personal travel? Effective March 10, 2020, students, families and staff are encouraged to avoid all travel, including personal travel, particularly to areas with known COVID-19 cases and where there is a high likelihood of contact with people from a variety of regions, either domestically or abroad.
  3. What about students and staff who travel to high risk areas that are not currently listed on the CDC as Warning Level 3? Effective March 11, 2020, School District 189 asks that students and staff who have just returned from high COVID-19 areas notify us and voluntarily self-quarantine for 14 days
  4. What is the rationale for these travel restrictions? School District 189 is going a step beyond current CDC and IDPH regulations. We are using an abundance of caution and taking every effort to minimize the impact of COVID-19 in our schools and community in order to support the safety of our students and staff. 

      Medical and public health officials are doing their best to understand the transmission of COVID-19. New information about the coronavirus is updated daily, and this respiratory virus continues to spread nationally and world-wide. Therefore, district leadership has decided to:

  • Discourage student and staff use of mass transit forms of transportation (air, rail, commercial bus) that are used by travelers who may be returning from high risk locations or may have had exposure to someone with COVID-19;
  • Avoid visitation to “high touch” locations (such as field trips to museums and aquariums or airports);
  • Encourage students, staff and families to avoid large gatherings of people, such as those involving 250 or more people who are coming from multiple regions (practice social distancing);
  • Encourage students, staff and others to limit the use of physical touch (hugs, handshakes).

 

  1. Can districts exclude students, staff or volunteers for 14 days if they come to school/work after visiting a region affected by the virus? Per IDPH guidance, any student returning from a location with sustained widespread transmission (CDC Travel Warning of Level 3) should not attend school for 14 days after the return date. Further, family members of these students should not attend work if they also traveled to one of the locations with a CDC Level 3 Travel Warning. Current information on travel warnings is available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html

      If a student, staff member or volunteer has returned from an affected geographic location within the past 14 days or has had contact with a COVID-19 case, and develops respiratory symptoms including fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, school personnel should immediately report the matter to the local health department/IDPH. Please keep in mind there are other respiratory viruses like influenza currently circulating in Illinois and the region. Individuals should call ahead before taking the student to a doctor’s office or emergency department to prevent any potential spread. All decisions regarding quarantine and exclusion must be made by state or local public health officials. Districts cannot, without first consulting the local health department/IDPH, exclude or deny enrollment or education to students who are residents of the district due to travel considerations. Districts must not apply standards that may be discriminatory for only one group of students.

  1. What about parents, volunteers, community partners, contractors or visitors? Parents, volunteers, community partners, contractors, practicum students and all other visitors to our schools are requested to follow the same guidelines and travel restrictions as staff and students. This additional precaution is taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 not only within our schools, but within our community as a whole.

If you have traveled or have further questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me at Sydney.stigge-kaufman@estl189.com or at 314-610-7420.

Sincerely,

Sydney Stigge-Kaufman

Director of Strategic Partnerships

 

_________ 

March 11, 2020

Dear School District 189 Parents and Staff:

Our number one priority continues to be the health and safety of our students, families and staff.  Due to the rapidly-changing information about COVID-19, here are updated answers to frequently asked questions. The original was posted March10, 2020 and updates have been made March 11, 2020.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT COVID-19

(Added 3.11.2020) 

  1. Do administrators and teachers pursue leads, rumors, overheard comments about people potentially being infected with COVID-19? We pursue all of these, including those on social media, that we see or hear ourselves or are reported to us by others. Many of these are rumors, but we do not take any chances.
  2. What are the restrictions for students and staff members who travel for school activities or as part of work? Effective March 10, 2020, School District 189 is following new guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education regarding travel in order to minimize any undue risk of exposure to the coronavirus. Until further notice, School District 189 will restrict travel to 200 miles from the School District 189 Board of Education building. Travel is restricted to within the state of Illinois.
  3. What about spring break or other scheduled personal travel? Effective March 10, 2020, students, families and staff are encouraged to avoid all travel, including personal travel, particularly to areas with known COVID-19 cases and where there is a high likelihood of contact with people from a variety of regions, either domestically or abroad.

      Students and staff members who plan to travel during Spring Break, or at any time during this health crisis, should be aware of the COVID-19 status of the location they are visiting. Locations are continuously updated on the CDC’s Travel Health Notices page. Any students or employees traveling to any place designated as a Warning Level 3 location during their time in that region must self-quarantine in their homes for a period of fourteen days from their last day in the region or from the last day that the region is designated as a Warning Level 3 location, whichever occurs first. The latest travel updates are available on the CDC’s web page for Traveler Information at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html

  1. What about students and staff who travel to high risk areas that are not currently listed on the CDC as Warning Level 3? Effective March 11, 2020, School District 189 asks that students and staff who have just returned from high COVID-19 areas notify us and voluntarily self-quarantine for 14 days. 
  2. What is the rationale for these travel restrictions? School District 189 is going a step beyond current CDC and IDPH regulations. We are using an abundance of caution and taking every effort to minimize the impact of COVID-19 in our schools and community in order to support the safety of our students and staff. 

      Medical and public health officials are doing their best to understand the transmission of COVID-19. New information about the coronavirus is updated daily, and this respiratory virus continues to spread nationally and world-wide. Therefore, district leadership has decided to:

  • Discourage student and staff use of mass transit forms of transportation (air, rail, commercial bus) that are used by travelers who may be returning from high risk locations or may have had exposure to someone with COVID-19;
  • Avoid visitation to “high touch” locations (such as field trips to museums and aquariums or airports);
  • Encourage students, staff and families to avoid large gatherings of people, such as those involving 250 or more people who are coming from multiple regions (practice social distancing);
  • Encourage students, staff and others to limit the use of physical touch (hugs, handshakes).
  1. Can districts exclude students, staff or volunteers for 14 days if they come to school/work after visiting a region affected by the virus? Per IDPH guidance, any student returning from a location with sustained widespread transmission (CDC Travel Warning of Level 3) should not attend school for 14 days after the return date. Further, family members of these students should not attend work if they also traveled to one of the locations with a CDC Level 3 Travel Warning. Current information on travel warnings is available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html

      If a student, staff member or volunteer has returned from an affected geographic location within the past 14 days or has had contact with a COVID-19 case, and develops respiratory symptoms including fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, school personnel should immediately report the matter to the local health department/IDPH. Please keep in mind there are other respiratory viruses like influenza currently circulating in Illinois and the region. Individuals should call ahead before taking the student to a doctor’s office or emergency department to prevent any potential spread. All decisions regarding quarantine and exclusion must be made by state or local public health officials. Districts cannot, without first consulting the local health department/IDPH, exclude or deny enrollment or education to students who are residents of the district due to travel considerations. Districts must not apply standards that may be discriminatory for only one group of students.

  1. What about parents, volunteers, community partners, contractors or visitors? Parents, volunteers, community partners, contractors, practicum students and all other visitors to our schools are requested to follow the same guidelines and travel restrictions as staff and students. This additional precaution is taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 not only within our schools, but within our community as a whole.
  2. Are athletes still competing? At this time, the Illinois High School Association (IHSA), and the Illinois Elementary Schools Association (IESA) the state organizations that regulate competition in interscholastic school level sports in Illinois, are still continuing with scheduled upcoming tournaments and competitions. IHSA and IESA leaders are following direction in consultation with the Illinois Department of Public Health. 
  3. How long do staff and students have to stay out of school if they have confirmation that they are carrying the virus? The CDC is currently recommending that those who have/had confirmed COVID-19 disease stay home for 14 days after they have two negative tests for COVID-19. 
  4. What is considered “exposure?” According to the CDC: “Based on what is currently known about COVID-19 and what is known about other coronaviruses, spread is thought to occur mostly from person-to-person via respiratory droplets among close contacts.

Close contact can occur while: 1) being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters) of a person with COVID-19 for a prolonged period of time. Close contact can occur while caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a health care waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case. 2) having direct contact with infectious secretions from a person with COVID-19. Infectious secretions may include sputum, serum, blood, and respiratory droplets.”

  1. Should a person be in social isolation if they were exposed to the virus or only if they are symptomatic? If someone is absolutely sure they have been exposed to the virus, public health officials need to be aware of this immediately. You must also notify your school administration immediately. That person will be told to self-monitor by public health officials. If they develop symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., fever, cough, shortness of breath), they should report it to their healthcare officials and see their healthcare provider immediately.

Those who are symptomatic should be on home isolation. Information on home isolation can be found here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html#precautions

  1. Should all family members of a person with a positive diagnosis be quarantined? If so, for how long? The CDC currently recommends that a person who is in the same household as a known COVID-19 carrier should follow these recommendations:

Household members, intimate partners, and caregivers in a non-healthcare setting may have close contact with a person with symptomatic, laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 or a person under investigation. Close contacts should monitor their health; they should call their healthcare provider right away if they develop symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 (e.g., fever, cough, shortness of breath).

There is also a long list of other general infection prevention precautions to follow if you live with someone infected with COVID-19. Here is a link to the full list of recommendations: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html#precautions

 

_________

March 10, 2020

Dear School District 189 Parents and Staff:

Our number one priority is the health and safety of our students, families and staff.  East St. Louis School District 189 continues to closely monitor updates and guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as well as other local, state and federal agencies regarding the Coronavirus COVID-19. Below are current responses to frequently asked questions. Please note the new restrictions on field trips, professional development and travel.

  1. Where can the most up-to-date resources and guidance on COVID-19 be found?  The U.S. Department of Education has resources linked directly to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at ed.gov/coronavirus. Further, current IDPH resources can be accessed at http://dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/diseases-and-conditions/diseases-a-z-list/coronavirus
  2. What do we know about COVID-19? What we currently know is that COVID-19 causes mild-to-moderate illness and symptoms like the flu, including fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Up-to-date information about symptoms can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html
  3. What can I do to protect myself and prevent the spread of COVID-19? As with any respiratory virus, students and personnel can protect themselves and others by taking every day common sense actions: 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. 
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. 
  • Stay home when you are sick. 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. 
  1. What is the school district doing to keep students and staff safe?The East St. Louis School District employs school nurses at all our campuses. Our nursing staff are available to assist families by identifying flu-like symptoms of students observed while at school. Additionally, school custodial staff are conducting additional cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces. Our campus custodial staff will continue to disinfect with hospital-grade products to help offset the spread of communicable illnesses.
  2. Are school buses being cleaned? Buses are disinfected daily after morning and evening bus routes.
  3. Who would make the decision to close schools? Local school districts, acting in accordance with guidance from IDPH and local public health departments, will make the final decision as to whether or not conditions require the closure of schools. Per board policy, the Superintendent is authorized to close school(s) in the event of an emergency that threatens the safety of students or staff members.
  4. How will learning continue if school is closed? Keeping students engaged in learning is of critical importance. In the event of a school closure, students will receive materials to support their learning. 
  5. Will field trips, professional development and other travel still continue? We are following new guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education regarding travel in order to minimize any undue risk of exposure to the coronavirus. Until further notice, School District 189 will restrict travel to 200 miles from the School District 189 Board of Education building. Travel is restricted to within the state of Illinois. Due to these restrictions on field trips, we are seeking opportunities for outside groups to come and bring resources and experiences to our schools and students.
  6. What if I need professional development to keep my certification current? Please seek online professional development or training opportunities that are in-state and within 200 miles.
  7. What if I live in Missouri and work for School District 189? Staff who live in Missouri are expected to work as normal unless directed otherwise.
  8. I’ve already planned a personal trip, should I go? Students, families and staff are encouraged to avoid travel, particularly to areas with known COVID-19 cases and where there is a high likelihood of contact with people from a variety of regions, either domestically or abroad.
  9. How will my child make up work if my student is absent? Please notify the school whenever your child is absent. The student or parent is encouraged to request missed assignments while absent. The student should then complete and return work provided by the teacher(s). 
  10. As a staff member, do I have to take sick days if I am quarantined? Follow the school district policy and procedures for sick leave.
  11. What do employees do if their child’s school closes? School District 189 makes independent decisions to close compared with other area schools and districts. If your child’s school is cancelled, please make arrangements for your child so you can continue to work.
  12. If a family member of a staff or student has been diagnosed with COVID-19, should I self-quarantine? Follow the guidance from the county health staff or medical professional regarding your diagnosis and next steps, including isolation to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Notify your school.

People may feel anxiety about the coronavirus because there is so much we do not know. It is important to monitor information provided by the CDC and news outlets. You may notice that students are fearful about the coronavirus. If they are worried to the point of struggling to sleep or being afraid to go to school, for example, School District 189 has school social workers and counselors available for support. 

Sincerely,

Arthur R. Culver, Superintendent

 

_________

March 3, 2020

The health and safety of our students is our top priority, so we want to share with you information that the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has published for schools throughout the state.

IDPH along with the Illinois Poison Center set up a hotline for residents across the state to call if they have questions about the coronavirus. Residents in Illinois can call the hotline at 800-889-3931 or email DPH.SICK@illinois.gov.

 

_________

February 28, 2020

Dear Parents and Staff,

We are working closely with local and federal agencies to monitor the development surrounding the Coronovirus COVID-19. Like many others around the world, you are probably following the news regarding the Coronavirus.  We wanted to take this opportunity to update you on the efforts and the measures the school district is taking to ensure the safety and health of our students and staff. 

About the virus itself...

East St. Louis District 189 will take its direction concerning the Coronavirus from the St. Clair County Health Department, Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois State Board of Education.  These entities receive guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  It is an evolving situation that is changing almost on a daily basis.  As a result, we are continuously monitoring the information that is provided.  Please visit our website at www.estl189.com for links to agencies with up-to-the-moment updates about Coronavirus.  The following is the current information on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website about the virus Coronavirus Guidance.

Currently, the health risk to the general public remains low, both in the U.S. and in Illinois.  At this time, only one suspected case of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) has been detected and referred to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) for proper identification in this region. 

Symptoms…

What we currently know is that COVID-19 causes mild-to-moderate illness and symptoms like the flu, including fever, cough and difficulty breathing. 

Keeping our students and staff healthy...

The East St. Louis School District employs school nurses at all our campuses.  Our nursing staff are available to assist families by identifying flu-like symptoms of students observed while at school. Additionally, school custodial staff are conducting additional cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces.   Our campus custodial staff will continue to disinfect with hospital-grade products to help offset the spread of communicable illnesses.

We thank all the parents and students who have done their part this year to ensure they received necessary vaccinations and have updated health histories on file with the school district.  We have had our healthiest student population in many years - with over 5,175 students in full medical compliance.  Immunizations and physicals are important.  The school-based health clinics at Vivian Adams Early Childhood Center and East St. Louis Senior High School are available to serve all district students.  While the Coronavirus is getting a lot of media attention, it is still flu season.  We encourage you to get a flu shot, if you have not already. 

Currently, there is no vaccine available to prevent COVID-19 infection.  As with any respiratory virus, students and school personnel can protect themselves and others by taking every day common sense actions: 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. 
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. 
  • Stay home when you are sick. 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. 

Illinois Department of Health does NOT recommend: 

  • the use of masks or gloves 
  • cancelling mass gatherings 
  • cancelling classes

Emotional and behavioral support...

Children and youth may hear alarming stories about the Coronavirus, causing them to feel anxious or fearful.  Please be open to hearing concerns from your child and reassure them.  In no circumstance is it appropriate for staff, students, or visitors to the school to make derisive comments about those who are impacted by the virus, or to “joke” about it. 

Following are some resources for talking with your children and students about the Coronavirus. 

How to Talk to Your Kids About the Coronavirus

How to Talk with Students About the Coronavirus

Again, we are monitoring all of our resources very closely.  Should the situation change in our area, we will be in touch immediately.

Thanks so much for joining us in helping to keep our East St. Louis Schools community healthy in all ways.

Sincerely,

Arthur R. Culver, Superintendent