Dear District 58 Families and Staff,
Our partner high school district, Community High School District 99, announced today that it will take an adaptive pause from its current hybrid learning model. An adaptive pause in this case means that in-person learning will be suspended for two weeks. This pause is taking place due to increased levels of COVID-19 in the District 99 community. As a District 58 family or staff member, you may be questioning what this decision means for District 58.
Although COVID-19 cases have been reported in District 58, through contact tracing we have determined that the virus is currently being transmitted outside of our schools. At this time, we have no documented cases originating in the District. Please note, the District is not stating that this will never take place. There is no risk-free environment during the pandemic. However, we believe that the health and safety precautions we have instituted in our classrooms are helping mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in District 58 schools. Like many other DuPage school districts, Downers Grove Grade School District 58 will continue offering our in-person hybrid instructional model with a full remote option.
District 99 and District 58 differ in many significant ways, including its geographic areas, staffing models, instructional models, student ages, and the number of students per building. Despite taking an adaptive pause, District 99 will continue to offer in-person instruction for small groups in specialized programs.
As we previously shared, District 58 considers a variety of factors when deciding whether schools can stay open, including county and local transmission levels; case and outbreak activity in our schools; and absenteeism among students and staff. District 58 reviews COVID-19 metrics daily and meets with the DuPage County Health Department weekly. The District is aware of the rising COVID-19 metrics throughout DuPage County, the region and the State of Illinois. We are closely monitoring how these numbers impact District 58.
We will continue to monitor this situation and examine our criteria over multiple weeks. Due to the ever-changing circumstances of the pandemic, the District continually assesses data and information as it becomes available. If we need to shift to remote learning or take an adaptive pause, our goal will be to provide staff and families with approximately one week’s notice, unless circumstances require us to close schools more quickly. Such circumstances could include transmission in the schools, staffing, absenteeism, and a significant disruption to the educational process. The District does not yet have a significant disruption to the educational process required to shift models. However, if the spread of COVID-19 in the community does not get better, we will likely be there soon.
Dr. Kevin B. Russell
Superintendent of Schools