All districts in the GOISD met with a representative from the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department this morning to discuss what steps schools should take to keep students safe. The health department has informed us that our communities are still considered low-risk for the spread of COVID-19, as there are no confirmed cases in the Upper Peninsula at this time. The best thing you can do is follow best practices to help prevent the spread and educate yourself. At this time, it is the recommendation of the health department that schools in our area remain open and implement district protocols for controlling the flu. All districts are following the recommendations issued by the State of Michigan for schools:
- Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home if you are sick and contact your healthcare provider.
Additionally, based on guidance from the Michigan Department of Education, Michigan High School Athletic Association, Office of the Governor, and Michigan Association of School Administrators, we are implementing the following proactive measures:
- All field trips are suspended until further notice.
- All assemblies and performances in our schools involving participation by the general public are suspended until further notice.
- All community meetings, community education programming, rentals, and gatherings scheduled to take place within our school facilities are suspended until further notice.
- Any after-school activity consisting of a group of fewer than 100 people and an extension of the normal learning day (clubs, athletic practices, etc.) will continue as planned.
The Governor has declared a state of emergency, we are taking COVID-19 very seriously and hope that with your help, we can mitigate the spread of this virus in our communities. Governor Whitmer said, “Community mitigation strategies are designed to be implemented at the individual, organizational, and community levels. They apply to businesses, workplaces, schools, community organizations, health care institutions, and individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and health profiles; everyone has an important role to play.” We will continue to take any/all measures to keep our children, staff, and school community safe.
The situation involving this health challenge is rapidly changing and we will update you as additional guidance is received. Thank you for your attention and support regarding this important topic as safety is our number one priority.