Dear FCSC Families and Staff,

As we closely monitor the data related to Fayette County's COVID-19 cases, we continue to see high numbers of positive residents.  We communicate with the health department frequently to seek their guidance as we follow our safety plans to keep our schools open.  While we felt that we were seeing a positive trend with attendance at Connersville High School last week after returning from fall break, the number of students absent, as a result of quarantines or illness at CHS is now exceeding the threshold established by the state with our attendance.  We monitor our attendance rates daily at all of our school buildings, as well as the number of positive cases, pending test results, or quarantined students and staff.  To this point, Connersville High School is our greatest concern with  a growing number of students required to be quarantined as a result of possible exposures to family, friends, or fellow students who tested positive for COVID-19.   We are doing our best to keep our schools free of any outbreaks of COVID-19 and we have had a lot of success in these efforts during the first three months of the school year. 

Our county is continuing to operate with a "red" designation by the state and we are among the highest positivity rates in Indiana.  We have done our best to prevent temporarily closing any of our school buildings; however, we are at a point where it is recommended that we close Connersville High School beginning Tuesday, November 10th and move to eLearning Days for the remainder of the week at CHS (November 10-13).  We are doing this to hopefully allow our students and staff to finish their periods of quarantine or isolation as a result of exposure to this virus.  Beginning Monday, November 16th, Connersville High School will then move to a "Hybrid" schedule until Thanksgiving Break. 

This hybrid schedule will separate the CHS student body into two groups.  Details about group assignments and scheduling information will be sent to families from CHS principal, Mr. Judd, by Thursday, November 12th.  During this hybrid schedule that is planned for November 16-24, half of the students will attend on Mondays and Wednesdays while the other half will attend on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Friday, November 20th will be an eLearning day for all CHS students, as well as a time when make up assignments, tests, and other opportunities for support will occur.  During the two days when only half of the students are onsite attending their classes, the students at home will also be participating in eLearning Days.  Again, Mr. Judd will be communicating details soon.  By operating under this hybrid schedule, we will continue to support students onsite and at home while allowing for more social distancing in classrooms and the cafeteria, as well as on school buses.  Extracurricular events are still postponed until November 16th and their status will be re-evaluated with our health department at the end of this week.

For our elementary and middle school buildings, we will continue to operate on a regular schedule.  As we look at the data related to our quarantines and positive cases, our high school has been, by far, our most significant challenge.  While this remains a fluid situation, we do not believe that it is necessary to close our PreK-8th grade buildings at this time.  Additionally, Whitewater Career Center will continue to operate as they are not having any signficant impact with their attendance rates with the students who attend from six area high schools.   Again, we will continue to closely monitor our data at our other school buildings in the coming days.  We appreciate the guidance and support of Dr. White and our local health department as they help us navigate through these challenging times.  Thank you for your understanding and support as you help us prevent this virus from entering our buildings by wearing masks, social distancing, and preventing exposure to people who may have the virus. 

Scott Collins

Superintendent

Fayette County Schools