Dear MPLSD Parents, Guardians, and Staff,
Greetings! The purpose of this communication is to make you aware of our plans for the final two weeks of the semester. First, I want to be clear that my goal is to get students back on campus as quickly as possible. MPLSD is one of the few districts in central Ohio that has had all of their students in grades kindergarten through grade twelve in school five days a week. Our staff has placed a priority on that because having students at school is important to all of us.
With that said, the Madison-Plains Local School District will be remaining in our remote learning mode for these final two weeks of the semester. As you likely have heard, earlier this week Madison County Public Health (MCPH) issued an advisory notice to school districts advising schools to close to students and utilize their remote (virtual) learning plans for the remainder of the calendar year. However, the advisory notice did include language that does require schools that reopen to maintain a full six feet of social distancing between all students and staff, and the School Operating Guidelines from MCPH have also been updated to include this firm requirement. Unfortunately, with our available space, we are not able to meet this more restrictive requirement in either our fully-present or our 50% capacity hybrid-learning model. We have spent time this week working to try to figure out creative ways that we could make this work, as we do want students back on campus. However, schools simply were not designed to have that much space between people, and the table barriers and desk shields we have built to add additional protective layers are being viewed as not sufficient enough, given the current guidance from MCPH.
Further, as you likely know, it was announced on Thursday of this week that Madison County is now on the “watch list” for going “purple” (i.e., level four) in Ohio’s Public Health Advisory System (OPHAS). The pandemic is at levels we have not seen before in Madison County. As such, I would like to take this opportunity to ask our community members to please follow the safety precautions of wearing masks, washing hands, and avoid social gatherings. We can make a difference in what is happening in Madison County, which will help us to get students back in school faster.
Though we are not able to have our students on campus for in-class learning at this time, I am going to permit our student-athletes and some of our other extra-curricular activities to resume practices and competitions. I am making this decision for two reasons. First, I want to provide as much normalcy as I am able, and these smaller groups are able to spread out more easily. Secondly, I believe it helps to provide hope that we will be able to get students back on campus sooner, as opposed to later, for in-class learning. Therefore, our sports teams and some of our extra-curricular activities can resume activity this coming Monday, December 07.
We have a special Board of Education meeting scheduled on Monday, December 07, at 6:00 p.m., to discuss these matters in more detail. The meeting will be held virtually, and it will be broadcast on Facebook.
I thank you for your continued support and understanding as we continue through this difficult time. We have worked hard to provide the best education we can for our students during this pandemic, and we will continue to work hard for them. I am grateful for all of the understanding, support, and grace you have provided. These are not easy times, but we are getting through them together! We are MP!
Chad Eisler, Superintendent
Madison-Plains Local School District2020 12 03 MCPH School Operating Guidelines 2020 2021 rev 20201203.pdf