March 12, 2020 – The following is a letter that was sent from Superintendent Paul Enderle to the District123 community regarding recent coronavirus information.
The health and safety of all District 123 students is always, and always will be, our highest priority.
With a heightened level of awareness around the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we want to provide you with updated information about COVID-19 and our district’s efforts to maintain the healthiest environment possible for our students. COVID-19 has now been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). Just from last night to this morning, the situation has reached a level that requires our immediate action to help curb the spread of the virus.
Therefore at this time, I am cancelling all non-essential community events at all District 123 schools effective today, March 12, 2020.
The Illinois Department of Public Health recommends the following guidance regarding a “Social distancing” strategy to slow the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing measures are taken to restrict when and where people can gather to stop or slow the spread of a disease or virus.
Non-essential school-related activities include: school assemblies, field trips, athletic and performance events, and PTA/PTO/PTSA events.
This includes events taking place at District 123 this week and next: Sward Bingo Night (Tonight – March 12), OLHMS Mustang Breakfast (Tomorrow – March 13), State of District Dinner (Tomorrow – March 13), D123 Fine Arts Fair at OLHMS (March 18), and Hometown Bingo Night (March 20)
District 123 will send timely updates to our community for as long as there is an ongoing concern regarding this public health issue. We will continue to closely monitor and evaluate the developing public health crisis and make decisions following guidance from ISBE, and various public health organizations. We do not make these decisions lightly, however, believe they are in the best interest of all District 123 students, faculty, staff and their extended families.
We know that part of our culture at District 123 includes welcoming our families and the community into our buildings. We are extremely proud of these events and the tremendous amount of planning and effort that it takes to host these events for our school community. Canceling non-essential events allows us to limit contact while also maintaining the healthiest learning environment for our community’s children, which currently aligns with IDPH’s recommendation to keep schools open.
We will continue to provide you updates in a timely manner. In the meantime, we thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate this challenging and fluid situation.
Paul J. Enderle Ed.D.