Although we have worked countless hours this summer to establish a campus reopening plan that we felt would have allowed The Weiss School to safely reopen for the 2020-2021 school year, recent health news in our local community has cast doubt upon our ability to ensure the safety of our students with a full return to traditional, on-site schooling. We are equally concerned to hear from so many our parents regarding the scarcity of COVID-19 testing sites, testing sites that would not test children without symptoms, and reported delays of up to 12 days to receive COVID-19 test results. We are very fortunate that we can provide COVID-19 rapid tests to all of our employees and students; however, the community's testing capacity has not reached the level needed to mitigate the exposure for all individuals to COVID-19.
We also know that the information surrounding COVID-19 continues to change daily, and as a school community, we are currently not willing to take a chance on anyone in The Weiss School community contracting COVID-19 due to the current high rates of spread of the virus.
After carefully considering this comprehensive health information and the potential negative impacts that can occur based on the most recent data that we have, we have decided that The Weiss School will open the 2020-2021 school year with 100% online instruction beginning Thursday, August 20, 2020.
We recognize that this is not the news our parents, who have chosen the on-site option, want to hear, but we have to prioritize our students' and teachers' safety. As a school community, we will continue to meet weekly to monitor the community spread of COVID-19 to provide updates on the prospect of safely reopening The Weiss School campus to students who have chosen the hybrid or on-campus options for learning.
Due to the safety concerns of our faculty returning to campus, we have pushed the start date to Thursday, August 20th to allow for a staggered training schedule for our teachers. The students will follow the traditional schedule beginning August 20th. We are meeting with teachers and staff in each division level in the school to determine how we can create the best online learning experiences for all our students, especially our youngest students until we can safely return to campus with the most minimal risk possible. All families will receive instructions and information shortly regarding the pick-up of all materials and supplies, parent meetings, back-to-school orientation dates, and additional calendar modifications.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we collectively work together to return to school in a traditional manner when it is safe for students, staff, and teachers.
Yours in education,
Dr. Tammy Ferguson Mr. Eric Jablin
Head of School Chairman Weiss School Board of Trustees