Update to Academy Families — April 2, 2021
Dear St. Johnsbury Academy Families,
I hope that the Zoom forum on Tuesday night was informative and reassuring to those who joined us—your questions were so helpful to us, and your expressions of support were much appreciated. This past week was fairly calm on the COVID front with our dorms returning to normal and students out and about again. You will have seen an alert today about an additional case—a community member who has not been on campus since March 11th and has no close contacts with the school. Cases in the county are certainly up, but we are still working hard to keep our campus a safe place to be every day.
A couple of quick notes as we go into the weekend:
New guidance: Today the Agency of Education and Department of Health confirmed that they are working on new guidelines for school safety and recovery to address the needs of the current moment, and that those guidelines will recommend reducing the required physical distance measure to 3 feet from 6 feet. This is news we have been awaiting eagerly, as the evidence regarding distancing has emerged, so we were glad to hear it. For now, though, until we are able to process the new guidelines with our team, we will continue to adhere to the 6-foot distance guidelines and will remain in the Green/White cohorts at least through April break. Stay tuned for more news on this.
April Break Travel: We continue to ask earnestly that you not travel non-essentially, even if you are vaccinated, until there is a better understanding of how vaccinated people can or can’t spread COVID-19. If you are fully vaccinated and two weeks have passed, the Vermont Department of Health does not require you to quarantine when you return from traveling, but we are requiring it because of the potential risk to our community.
Student Support: We continue to urge you to help us connect with those students who need support with their academic progress or who have been struggling in any way. We see better outcomes when students are connected and engaging with us, and being here in person if you’re in a cohort helps that immensely.
Have a good weekend, stay safe, and we will be in touch. As always, I want to hear from you with your questions and concerns, so please never hesitate to reach out.
Dr. Sharon Howell