Message from Dr. Russell on state guidelines for re-opening of schools

Dear Students, Staff, and Families of District 58:

I hope this message finds you and your families safe and well. Today, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) released guidance around opening schools for the  2020-21 school year.

This 60-page document has been much anticipated and will go a long way toward answering critical questions all of us share about what the 2020-21 school year will look like. The document addresses in-person learning, scheduling, transportation, wearing masks, social distancing and other measures intended to keep everyone safe and healthy, while also re-engaging students in the learning process.

District 58 is keenly aware of the urgent need to communicate to families about what to expect next school year. Right now, we don’t have all the answers to specifics of the reopening as this document was released to school districts at the same time it was released to the public. Therefore, we kindly ask for your patience as our staff thoroughly reviews this detailed guidance and implements the suggestions into our District’s own transition plan.

As you may know, our District formed a Remote Learning Task Force earlier this month, which has already met several times to consider all of the possibilities and challenges surrounding learning in the fall. The state  guidance will accelerate those conversations, and I’m confident our District can put forth a plan that prioritizes the health and safety of our students while maintaining a dynamic learning environment. The task force will conclude its work on June 30, 2020, and share its feedback with the District Leadership Team (DLT) on July 8, 2020. The administration will present to the Board on July 13, 2020, including feedback from the Remote Learning Task Force, the DLT, as well as a summary of the updated ISBE guidance. District 58 will then finalize its plan later in July and inform all families via email.

Thank you again for your patience, understanding, and flexibility as our entire district navigates a situation together that none of us could have imagined.

I will be in touch soon. In the meantime, stay safe and enjoy your summer.

Sincerely,

Dr. Kevin B. Russell

District 58 Superintendent