Latest School News
First and foremost, we are committed to the health, well-being, and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and parents at St. Matthew's Parish School. Please find the School's community communication below.
As we near May 1, I’m writing to share my two-week update regarding our timeline for return to campus. The decision to resume in-person instruction at St. Matthew’s at some point in the future is proving to be as complicated, if not more so, than my initial decision to commence distance learning and remote instruction back on March 11. Putting aside the mixed messages and reporting from the media and the economic or political arguments for an early, gradual or delayed reopening, our decision for return will be based on community health and the safety of our students. To be clear, we will return when it is safe for us to do so. The challenge is that our students, teachers, and parents want answers about things that are farther into the future and beyond the reach of our current data and information. As a crisis consultant recently stated, “We can reasonably forecast two weeks out, but our community wants answers six weeks out.”
Though the rate of growth of new daily cases appears to have peaked in California and seems to be flattening or decreasing, there are intermittent spikes. The May 15 Safer at Home directive remains in effect for our area and the risk for transmission continues to exist. Social distancing practices are working but cannot guarantee that a second wave won’t come in the fall. Governor Newsom has outlined six goals for reopening for businesses and services. We will consider how that affects us and the physical and procedural modifications that need to be in place in order for us to move forward. It is unlikely under these current conditions that I foresee a return to school this spring for instruction, and thus we will continue with remote instruction and distance learning through June 9. However, with the right conditions and safety measures in place, I am holding on to the hope that we may be able to return in smaller numbers for traditional functions and events. Once the State Order has been lifted, I will provide my next update.
We understand that planning is difficult with these shifting variables. Therefore, I have decided to fix some core calendar dates to control some of the uncertainty, reserving the right to make changes to the calendar within the core dates as circumstances demand. The last day of school this year and the beginning of school next year will not change:
Last Day of Classes : June 10, 2020
School Opens : September 9, 2020
In the meantime, we will continue to fine-tune our virtual teaching and learning experience for the remainder of the year. Next week I will communicate news about our summer plans (Summer Session) after coordinating with St. Matthew’s Church (Summer Camp). The Board of Trustees have committed themselves to working through the spring and summer and will provide leadership and guidance regarding the opening of school in the fall. We’ve established special task force committees to assist me and the administration as we work through different scenarios regarding health, safety, facilities, technology, etc.
I realize you are all experiencing varying degrees of quarantine fatigue. These are difficult times and I want to express my gratitude to everyone for the collective efforts to adjust our lives and make sacrifices for the common good.
May you have blessings of health and well-being.