All Union93 schools are closed the week of November 30 - December 4 due to Covid-19 concerns.
Statements from Supt. Mark Hurvitt:
Monday November 30, 2020
I am writing today to fill you in on our plans for school in December in Union 93 in light of the flurry of issues which came up yesterday on the heels of Thanksgiving break.
First of all, I am very proud and happy that we made it through November 24th IN PERSON in Union 93, 5 days a week. November 24th was also the end of the 1st trimester in Union 93, so there’s that, too.
Second of all, the climate has definitely shifted recently in Maine (200+ new cases per day), in Hancock County (which was doing way better than State average for a long time), and in Union 93 (which had no in school cases until a couple of days ago). Now, we can’t ignore the fact that COVID is here in Blue Hill, Brooksville, Castine, Penobscot, and Surry, and that, as a school system, we are charged with keeping students and staff safe in our schools. We have done an amazing job, but now we find an array of challenges ahead of us.
We all know about the outbreak at The Island Nursing Home (46 people) and that is very concerning to all of us.
Plus, the CDC has told us that we need to test 65 people at Brooksville Elementary School because of the case there. I don’t need to tell you how interconnected all of these five towns are, and, even if only 10% of those tests turn out to be positive, that still means 6-7 people with close contacts to individuals in the other four schools. We have seen how this virus can spread. So, with the support of all our Administrators and Nurses, earlier today, I have decided to play it safe and to go remote (Red) for this entire week (11/30-12/4).
We will know a lot more by the weekend, so we are going to re-convene on Sunday morning as an Administrative Team and get the word out to everyone by noon on Sunday (12/6) about the plans for the weeks of December 7th, December 14th, and the short week of December 21st and 22nd. My thought, at this point, is that we will move to our Yellow Plans on December 7th, especially if Hancock County is designated Yellow on December 4th, the next designation date. And, as far as school on January 4th, 2021, we’ll see!
Since we are a School Union, and every town has its own School Board, and every town has its own Green, Yellow, and Red Plan, your Principal will be getting back to you with the details you will need to know. Such as:
When does remote learning start this week?
What will it look like?
What will the expectations be?
What about the technology (which is probably at school)?
What about the home learning packets?
What about school lunches?
What does your Yellow Plan mean (since we haven’t utilized those before)?
And, there are many other details I haven’t listed.
In any event, Brooksville will be out of school until at least December 9th. And, this brings out another good point, that we try to work as a School Union, but often individual schools will have different plans because of individual circumstances.
Also, School Board meetings in December will all be on zoom, and we are in the process of making those changes.
All and all, not a great e-mail as I had hoped to have schools open, in person, at least through 2020. But, at this point, that is not the safest route for students, staff, and for the Peninsula Community.
The Surry School community believes that learning is a cooperative effort among students, parents, educators, and community members, and that all students have the ability to learn and demonstrate their learning in individual ways.
The Surry School community seeks to:
Set high standards of excellence;
Provide a safe, positive, and nurturing learning environment;
Offer educational methods and programs adapted to each student's needs; and
Create a foundation for lifelong learning and good citizenship by educating the whole
person academically, socially, emotionally, and physically.