• A Message from the Superintendent Update– Nov. 23

    Dear Members of the Brighton School Community, 

    As you know, we have been designated as geographically within an orange zone beginning for schools on Thursday, Nov. 26. Here is what we know and plan on doing next:

     

    1. This is not a result of school infection rates, school health and safety or the school testing program. Our numbers are exceptionally low and incomparable to the community rate of infection. 

      You’ve done what is needed and should be commended for your efforts. This is  happening as a result of the state’s designation of our zip code as one with a high rate of infection, and is not related to our school population where the rate has been very low.

    2. Orange Zone designation means that:
      1. School is required to go all remote for 4 calendar days.
      2. 100% of in person staff and students would be required to be tested before school could reopen.
      3. 25% of the population would need to be tested weekly while orange zone designation continues. This would be a unique 25% per week, again requiring 100% unique individual participation over 4 weeks.
    3. 72% of our in-person population replied to our requests for consent to test. 92% of those replying gave consent. That means that overall, 66% of our in-person population gave consent to testing.
    4. If a student does not consent to being tested, they cannot come to school while we are in an orange zone.
    5. We DO NOT have capacity to move non-consenting individuals into the all remote environment.
    6. We are concerned about the educational obstacles, challenges, and disruptions to moving individuals in and out of learning environments.
    7. We are going to be closed for in-person instruction and providing all remote instruction for the week of Nov. 30, at a minimum. We will reopen as quickly as possible and attempt to provide you timely notice for planning purposes. We expect to notify you of our status for hybrid program reopening for the week of Dec. 7 by next Wednesday, Dec. 2 at 3 p.m.

    The bottom line is that we would love to be able to test 100% of people, but realize that 100% of people do not want to be tested. We don’t have capacity to support additional all remote learners and the logistics of going in and out of remote instruction for significant numbers of students, but not entire classes, make this type of system ineffective and unsustainable. We need to be all remote until the state develops a different solution to this challenge and provides us guidelines that are feasible. To that end, we will be advocating with the state for an approach to orange zone designation that considers the exceptionally low rate of infection in the school population. We are hopeful that there are solutions that support this important public health effort while taking into account our belief that school has proven to be a very safe place for students and staff alike.

    Principals from each school will be sending specific information and schedules for remote instruction that is scheduled to begin on Monday, Nov. 30. Teachers will also follow-up accordingly.

    Thank you to everyone for your patience and again for all that you have done to keep your community safe. Best wishes for a safe, restful, and very healthy Thanksgiving.

    Kevin

    Kevin McGowan, Ed. D.

    Superintendent of Schools