Updated ISBE Public Health Guidance

The following was a letter sent from Superintendent Paul Enderle to the Oak Lawn-Hometown School Community regarding additional public health guidance received from the Illinois State Board of Education.

District 123 Families and Staff:

On Tuesday, March 9, 2021, the Illinois State Board of Education and Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) issued updated public health guidance to schools. CLICK HERE to read the guidance update. With the reduction in community transmission rates, the newly updated guidance supports the return to in-person instruction “as soon as practicable” within the State of Illinois. The guidance outlines IDPH health and safety requirements that continue to include face coverings and other PPE, social distancing, contract tracing, isolation and quarantine, maintaining clean environments, handwashing, as well as additional measures to control the spread of COVID-19 in schools. Key points in this updated guidance include:

  • A layered approach to essential mitigation strategies that have been in place since the beginning of the pandemic;
  • Social distancing is now defined as 3 to 6 feet for students and vaccinated staff;
  • Continued use of contact tracing protocols, isolation, and quarantine for the non-vaccinated;
  • Continued use of self-certification processes of students and staff;
  • Capacity limits have increased for indoor areas. Limits are now determined by the ability to accommodate 3 to 6 feet of social distancing within the space.

This most recent guidance supports the District 123 3-Phase Hybrid Transitional plan released last month that moves our school district to a full day, 5-day a week in-person instructional model. Our reentry teams continue to work preparing our schools for this transition. While this guidance does allow for more students to learn in our physical classrooms, the remote learning program for families that have chosen it, will continue for the remainder of the year. Our hybrid transitional plan listed below will continue as scheduled.

  • Phase 1: March 2-April 1: Alternating Day Hybrid
  • Phase 2: April 7-April 30: Blended approach using both hybrid and full-day options
  • Phase 3: May 3 – June 4: Full 5-Day a week programing

Our door is always open for questions and concerns that may arise. We will always strive to find the best answers in service to you, our students, and the entire Oak Lawn-Hometown school community. Additionally, several questions were answered about COVID-19 school protocols at our recent State of the District Event on Wednesday evening. Please CLICK HERE to view the recording.

Thank you for your continued partnership in helping us live our school district’s mission of preparing today’s learner for tomorrow’s world.

Paul J. Enderle, Ed.D.