Coronavirus Update

 
March 22, 2020
 
Community transmission is ongoing in Santa Clara County. As the community follows the Health Officer Order to Shelter in Place issued on March 16, 2020, notification regarding potential contacts to cases will no longer be provided, and school districts/charter schools are not required to provide any notifications.  Everyone, except for those providing or receiving essential services, should be staying home, especially anyone who is feeling ill.  Anyone who develops symptoms of COVID-19, should call their healthcare provider for further guidance before going to the doctor.  Only the severely ill should seek care at an emergency room and should, if at all possible, call first.
 
 
March 13 - 11:30 AM
 
Following the directive of the County Health Department and the Santa Clara County Superintendent, Discovery Charter School students will receive an online education effective March 16, 2020, to April 3, 2020.
 
The Discovery Charter Phoenix campus will hold its previously scheduled Spring Break from April 6 - April 10, 2020.  The Discovery Falcon campus will hold its previously scheduled Spring Break from April 13 - 17, 2020.
 
Teachers will provide links and curriculum directly to their classrooms.  
 
 
March 13
 

As more and more schools close, we are waiting to hear if the SCCOE will come to the same conclusion.  If so, we will keep you posted, but it may break in the news first.  Our teachers are at the ready in the event of a shutdown.

It's important to note; we have no confirmed cases of Coronavirus at either site.  We continue to monitor classrooms for signs of illness and maintain our cleaning protocols.

Because adults are the ones currently being diagnosed, I have decided to limit the visitors on campus beginning Monday, March 16th.  I know this causes a burden on the teachers, and we have met to discuss how we will all pitch in to support recess, curb drop off and other activities that we rely so heavily upon parents for.

To be clear, effective Monday, March 16th, please drop your students at the curb and pick them up at the end of the day.  Only staff will remain on campus.  Please know that YOU are what makes us who we are, and this decision is based upon the need to mitigate the chance of spreading to our community.

Please note if the SCCOE notifies us that they are recommending closure, we will comply and inform you as soon as we are alerted.

Thank you for your patience as we navigate this difficult situation.

 
March 12
 
As things progress in what has now been called a Pandemic, you probably see school closures and wonder, "Why hasn't Discovery closed?"
Discovery Charter School currently has no confirmed cases of Coronavirus, and have not been given the authority to close. We have been advised by the SCCOE (our authorizers) that a public school may only shut the doors at the recommendation of the County Health Department.
At this time, the recommendation remains the same for our schools. Stay open. It is not up to administration; it is the law and failure to follow that could result in consequences to our schools.
At Discovery, we recognize the very diverse makeup of families. Some of you have elderly grandparents living with you, and although children are not getting this virus at as high a rate as adults, they may still be carriers. You may feel it's in your family's best interest to keep your children home.
As parents, you have the right to do so. However, we are still open, so these absences will be marked as unexcused, with the exception being that we will not enforce truancy protocols. Your decision to stay home will not affect their progress negatively. If you choose to stay home, please remember that your teachers are still teaching children at school and are not available to provide individual plans for families who are opting not to come. Teachers may offer guidelines of what curriculum to work on, but you should not expect daily homework sent home.
In the event we are asked to close, we will put the procedures for securing homework in place. These are the plans your teachers have already shared with you.
It remains crucial that you and your children stay home if you are sick. We will send students home if they come with a fever. You should continue to follow handwashing protocols and the advice of your pediatrician. If your child has symptoms or you have been diagnosed with the Coronavirus, you must contact the office so we can contact the County Health Department for the next steps. We will notify the community as soon as we are made aware of these cases.
We appreciate your keeping calm in this time of uncertainty.
 
 
March 9
 

The guidance from Public Health is that we should review each of the events we have planned, and make decisions regarding cancellation on a case-by-case basis. If your student is scheduled to attend a school trip in the next several weeks, your teacher and/or Field Trip Coordinator will be in contact with you directly with more information about the cancellations. And if the event is not canceled, you will be informed of the precautions that are being taken.

We understand that guidance from Public Health may continue to change in the coming days, but please be assured that we are continuing to monitor this situation closely and are remaining in daily contact with the Santa Clara County Office of Education and the Public Health Department.

We realize that there is a high volume of information about COVID-19 available and that information is often reported in the news media before we have been given official guidance for schools from Public Health. We appreciate your understanding and patience as we work together to make the best decisions possible for students and staff and get critical information to you as soon as we are able. The Public Health Department is not recommending closing schools at this time. If a staff member or student in one of our schools is confirmed to have COVID-19, the Public Health Department will consider, based on the specific facts and circumstances of that case, whether closure of that school is warranted.

The reason that Public Health is not recommending school closures at this time is because children have not been shown to be a high-risk group for serious illness from this virus. Should the Public Health Department determine a school closure is warranted, the duration is likely to be the length of time needed to conduct cleaning protocols. As much as possible, children should be allowed to carry on with their education and normal activities. However, we know that some children have underlying health conditions, such as weakened immune systems, that put them at higher risk. Parents and caregivers of children with underlying health conditions should consult with healthcare providers about whether their children should stay home.

There has been some confusion about what constitutes exposure to COVID-19. For exposure to have occurred, there has to be a direct link between the person exposed and a person that has been confirmed to test positive with COVID-19. Exposure to a person that has merely been exposed does not have COVID-19 and is only quarantining/isolating out of caution is not considered to have put you at risk for COVID-19. If you have reason to believe you have been exposed directly to an individual that has tested positive with COVID-19, you should immediately call your health practitioner who will then inform the Public Health Department.

You should also call your health practitioner if you are experiencing serious health symptoms and you should always stay home from school if you are sick. The Public Health Department has continued to emphasize that the vast majority of people who became infected with COVID-19 do not become seriously ill, and fully recover.

Thank you again for your understanding as we work together to protect students, families, and staff. 

 
March 8
 
As we move into this week, there are no known cases of Coronavirus in our schools.  We remain open at both campuses.  Field trips are being evaluated on a case by case bases and as always you should make the decision you feel is best for your children.  We don't know how long this situation is going to continue so we can't make long term decisions at this point.  What may work today, won't tomorrow and the key is being flexible.
 
You should hear from your teachers by the end of the weekend regarding how they plan to disseminate school work in the event of a closure.  If you don't hear from them by Monday, March 9th, please contact them directly to see where you might locate their plan.  It's important to note that this situation is ever-changing and we are updating you as we get information.  
 
March 6
 
Both Discovery campuses remain open with no known cases of Coronavirus.  We follow the advice of the CDC and County Health Department while working alongside the Santa Clara County Office of Education.  The most up to date information will be located here along with specific information in the event of a closure.
 
We are sanitizing classrooms, and reminding staff, parents and students to stay home if they are ill and to wash frequently while at school.  The County Health Department school recommendation at this time is as follows:
 

The County Public Health Department is not recommending closing schools at this time. If a staff member or student in a specific school confirmed to have COVID-19, the Public Health Department will consider, based on the specific facts and circumstances of that case, whether closure of that school is warranted. The reason we are not recommending school closures at this time is because children have not been shown to be a high-risk group for serious illness from this virus. As much as possible, children should be allowed to carry on with their education and normal activities.

Some children have underlying health conditions, such as weakened immune systems, that put them at higher risk. Caregivers of children with underlying health conditions should consult with healthcare providers about whether their children should stay home.

In the event of a school closure, your teachers have planned how to provide a curriculum to your children and they will communicate how to receive that with you directly.

Please watch the parent .io groups for more information or check back here.

You may also keep up on the situation by going to these links;

County Health Department

https://www.sccgov.org/sites/phd/news/Pages/new-guidance-new-covid-19-3-5-2020.aspx

Center for Disease Control

https://www.cdc.gov/