Durango School District 9-R has been coordinating with San Juan Basin Public Health as we monitor the global pandemic of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
At this time of year, there are many causes of respiratory illnesses, including the common cold and influenza. Symptoms of coronavirus infection include fever, cough and/or shortness of breath, and fatigue.
Parents and staff can help by continuing to implement the same critical practices – themselves and with their children – as would be followed during flu season.
Wash your hands often with soap and water (at least 20 seconds)
Cover coughs and sneezes
Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects
Stay away from sick people
Stay home/keep kids home if they are sick
Report flu-like symptoms to your school
We will continue to work with our local authorities and will communicate any updates to our families. More information is available on the San Juan Basin Public Health’s website: https://sjbpublichealth.org/coronavirus/.
UPDATED COVID-19 INFORMATION FOR FAMILIES 10.14.20
Since the community has moved to Safer at Home Level 1, some adjustments have been made to our process map. We also have updated documents for families on next steps, scheduling testing with Cedar Diagnostics and letters from Physicians.
I know the start of school has been a whirlwind. I appreciate those of you who have sent feedback to me and our school leaders. This pandemic clearly continues to present challenges to our educational system, but we do greatly appreciate your patience and grace.
ATTENDANCE REMINDERS FOR BLENDED AND REMOTE FAMILIES 10.12.20
If you are a remote or blended learner, it is critical that you complete your attendance DAILY. For blended learners please note this applies to your at-home days only; your teacher will mark your attendance when you are in-person.
Durango Schools has a partnership agreement with Cedar Diagnostics for students and staff to receive expedited COVID testing. Cedar Diagnostics has updated their scheduling system specifically to support Durango School District 9-R.
We know many families are thinking about the upcoming holidays and how COVID-19 will impact our favorite fall traditions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have put together some general guidelines to keep in mind when making plans, as well as ranking various activities from low risk, to moderate risk to high risk.
On Wednesday we informed our school community that there was a possible case of COVID-19 at Animas Valley Elementary. As a precautionary measure, a cohort went into quarantine while final determinations were made around this case.
We are pleased to report that the individual with symptoms received a negative COVID-19 test result and the quarantined cohort will be able to return to in-person learning on Monday.
UPDATE FOR FAMILIES - AFFECTED COHORT AT ANIMAS VALLEY ELEMENTARY 09.30.20
On September 30, 9-R was notified by San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) that an individual at Animas Valley Elementary is being evaluated for COVID-19. Because of the severity of symptoms the individual is experiencing, the cohort must go into quarantine until the results are returned and a release is provided from the affected individual’s Primary Care Provider.
UPDATE FOR FAMILIES - NEGATIVE RESULT AT ANIMAS VALLEY 9.16.20
On Monday we informed our school community that there was a possible case of COVID-19 at Animas Valley Elementary. As a precautionary measure, a cohort went into quarantine while final determinations were made around this case. We are pleased to report that the individual with symptoms received a negative COVID-19 test result and the quarantined cohort will be able to return to in-person learning tomorrow.
Dear Families, 9-R was notified that an individual who has been in contact with an individual cohort at Animas Valley is being evaluated for COVID-19. The school and the district are working proactively with SJBPH to make the appropriate notifications and next steps for those who may have been in close contact with this individual while the investigation is being conducted.
UPDATE FOR 9-R FAMILIES - NEGATIVE RESULT AT DHS 9.10.20
On Tuesday we informed our school community that there was a possible case of COVID-19 at DHS. As a precautionary measure, three cohorts went into quarantine while final determinations were made around this case. We are pleased to report that the individual with symptoms received a negative COVID-19 test result and the quarantined cohorts will be able to return to in-person learning tomorrow.
The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture announced the extension of the free meals for kids aged 0-18 through as late as December 31, 2020. The flexibility allows Durango 9-R to operate the summer food service program, which makes free meals available to all children through the fall months. This unprecedented move will help ensure – no matter what the situation is on-the-ground – children have access to nutritious food as the country recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.
9-R was notified that an individual who has been in contact with students and staff at DHS is being evaluated for COVID-19. The school and the district are working proactively with SJBPH to make the appropriate notifications and next steps for those who may have been in close contact with this individual while the investigation is being conducted.
On September 5, 2020, 9-R was notified by San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) that a student at Florida Mesa Elementary tested positive for COVID-19. The school and the district are working proactively with SJBPH to make the appropriate notifications and next steps for those who may have been in close contact with this individual.
One of the biggest questions parents have is – when will schools have to close or how likely is it that my child may need to stay home in the future. The answer really is that if we honor our precautions and safety measures, we hope there will be little impact moving forward.
Good morning, this is Dan Snowberger, Superintendent of Durango School District 9-R with this week’s community message. On Monday, Colorado Governor Polis extended his cancellation of in-person instruction in Colorado for the remainder of the school year.
This district message this week includes:
Reminder of important services for students and families available from 9-R
Information on an opportunity to help families in our community during these challenging times,
Information on how to return work for grading and feedback
A request for feedback on a couple of topics in planning for next year and a possible cell phone policy, and
A message from Melissa McKnight, District Accountability and Advisory Council and a parent in Durango 9-R.
In support of the Durango 9-R’s transition to remote learning during its pandemic response, the district is offering limited direct technology support access to students. Information on these services are identified below.
Today’s message includes: information about changes in attendance and parent/student communication procedures based upon community feedback, important messages from Police Chief Bob Brammer, Executive Director of San Juan Basin Public Health Liane Jollon, information on Open Enrollment, Middle School Choice, and re-registration for next year, and closure reminders about services and supports that continue to be available for our students and community.
Durango School District 9-R is making a temporary modification to the grading policy at the middle and high school levels for the fourth grading period/second semester of this school year due to COVID-19. We are changing the grading system to a scale of P (reflects a grade of C or higher), P- (reflects a grade of D), or NC (no credit). Students and families who wish to receive traditional letter grades may request to do so. The rest of this letter highlights the specific shifts in the system and actions a family will take to receive traditional letter grades.
UPDATE ON ATTENDANCE REPORTING FOR FAMILIES 4.13.20
Parents/guardians of elementary students will receive an attendance link in their email on Friday mornings. Parents/guardians will use this link to report participation in weekly lessons before Monday at noon.
Good morning parents, this is our weekly communication about our district’s distance learning model. We are trying to limit our district-wide communication to once a week to limit the communication you receive about your child’s schooling.
In this communication, we intend to provide more information about:
our closure and plans to reopen school as soon as permissible,
information on setting up a child’s learning environment in the home and possible schedules to operate around,
Information on our meal service for children in our community
update on grading practices moving forward, and
general information from our public health department on how to help us get through this “Stay at home order.”
Hello 9-R families and members of our Durango community. Thank you for your work with your children to keep them engaged in learning during these unusual times.While we have started distance learning, we recognize that our families are in different places.First and foremost, please know that our intent is not to overwhelm our families, but to provide enough academic engagement to meet the varying needs of students across our community.We know this is a stressful time for all of us.If you are finding the work to be overwhelming, communicate with your child’s teacher or your school leaders.Our goal is to keep our children engaged in learning, but we also want to ensure that we partner with families during these trying times.
STAY-AT-HOME ORDER - WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO SCHOOL FAMILIES 03.27.2020
As we all know things change quickly and many families are asking about the governor’s stay at home order and public health order (attached). We wanted to provide some clarity. Please know that education is considered essential.
Additionally, the order states that traveling for the purpose of “...receiving materials for distance learning, for receiving meals, and any other related services from educational institutions…” is an approved purpose.
It has been great to see the collaboration and creativity of staff as they work remotely to identify ways to support students remotely. We are excited and anxious about our first day back at school tomorrow with our new remote learning environment, and truly look forward to welcoming kids back to school.Parents should expect more information from their child(ren)’s teachers on the work being assigned.Several documents are available here.These will provide you helpful information on what to expect and how best to support your student.
To support you as you help to create the best learning environment possible for your child we have added a new link on the front page of all school sites called Remote Learning.
UPDATE FROM SUPERINTENDENT DAN SNOWBERGER - 3.23.2020
Dear 9-R Families,
We have been busy standing up new services and preparing for a new way for students and teachers to support academic growth and success from home. We know this will be a critical partnership with parents as we all work together to support your child at home. We will continue to share more information that will support your home learning environments, including daily schedule idea and ways you can prepare your child for success. We truly appreciate your support and grace as we all work to navigate these new waters.
I hope you have been able to enjoy this Spring Break and spend some quality time with your families.Such family time is important during uncertain times.Like us, our children feel stress in times like this.This is a great opportunity for game time, watching movies together, reading a book, or playing outside.Lowering tension in our homes and engaging in fun, family time will help lower anxiety and keep our kids in a positive space.
9-R EXTENDS SCHOOL CLOSURE THROUGH APRIL 17 - 3.19.2020
To help mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Colorado, on Wednesday, March 18, 2020, Colorado Governor Jared Polis ordered that all public and private schools across the state suspend in-person learning from March 23 to April 17.
The Governor made this order via press release yesterday afternoon.
9-R ROLLS OUT REMOTE MEAL SERVICES TO SUPPORT FAMILIES - 3.18.2020
The school district will provide access to breakfast and lunch in take-home packages at central pickup sites for all families in Durango as a continued support for families during school closures. These sites include remote bus stops as well as in-town locations.Any child from age 0-18 years will be eligible to pick up breakfast and lunch at these established locations at designated times for pick up. The child must be present to pick up a meal.
EXTENSION OF SCHOOL CANCELLATION THROUGH FRIDAY MARCH 27, 2020 - 3.17.2020
Based on feedback from local health officials and community leaders, Durango School District 9-R is extending its current cancellation for students through Friday, March 27. The district will continue to monitor the situation in our community and make decisions regarding further extension of the cancelation by Wednesday of each week. This will remain our practice for each week moving forward as needed until a decision to resume school is made.
IMPORTANT UPDATE FROM SUPERINTENDENT DAN SNOWBERGER - 3.16.2020
We recognize that school closing is a major decision and challenges many of our families with a lack of childcare or supervision while parents are engaged in their careers and work.We don’t take this decision lightly, but will always take the best interest of our community to heart as we evaluate the situation.
Currently, our schools are closed until Wednesday, March 25. Our district will evaluate conditions and circumstances each week and determine if extension of the closure is needed.Those decisions can be expected on Wednesday of each week.As this is a rapidly changing situation, we will decide one week at a time to limit the unnecessary impact on our community as a whole.
AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES CANCELLED 3/12 and 3/13/2020 - 3.12.2020
The following is a non-emergency message from Durango School District 9-R for all parents and staff.
Following the direction of the Colorado High School Activities Association, the district is cancelling all after-school activities today, March 12, 2020, and tomorrow, March 13, 2020.This does not include Kids' Camp however; that will run as normal.
Additionally, today's walk from DHS to Buckley Park, planned by our local DEA and DESPA associations to show community support to fund public education, has been postponed. A new date will be announced once set.
If you have any questions or concerns about these cancellations, please contact your school office.Thank you.
MESSAGE FROM SUPERINTENDENT DAN SNOWBERGER 3.11.2020
As you know, all of our community agencies are closely monitoring the situation involving the Coronavirus.Our school district continues to work with San Juan Basin Public Health and other local authorities to monitor the situation and have a preparedness plan to support our students and our families in the event that a local case is detected.
While healthy individuals are likely to recover from this virus as with any other, there are certain populations at higher risk; and as such, we want to be especially aware of the risks we pose as potential carriers to those who are more susceptible.One infected with this virus often lacks any symptoms for up to 14 days during which time they may be highly contagious without even knowing.
With heightened concerns around communities preparing for and preventing the spread of COVID-19, also known as novel coronavirus, there have been several considerations regarding school trips, spring break travel, and travel in general.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a statement this week advising communities to prepare for a domestic outbreak of COVID-19, commonly known as the coronavirus. To-date, there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Colorado.
Building on best practices and official health recommendations, 9-R is updating its Emergency Operations Plan in concert with San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) to ensure current best practices are reflected in our response plan.