School Districts 75 and 120 parents and guardians:
While increasing cases of COVID-19 in the state and in our community remind us that the pandemic is not over, we are proud of how we have been able to meet the challenges to this point. With your help, we will continue to do our best to keep our schools open for your children.
Keeping Students in School
Our schools are important community centers, not just for academic learning, but for social-emotional well-being, safety, and nutrition. We understand the importance of keeping our schools open and have dedicated ourselves to ensuring our students and staff remain safely in-person to school during the 2021-2022 school year. Our efforts have been grounded on the recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Lake County Health Department (LCHD). We have maintained the recommended health and safety protocols, while keeping children in school.
Our staff continues to work toward making our schools as safe as possible for the students and community. This year we returned to schools with nearly 100 percent of all staff fully vaccinated, opportunities for students to get vaccinated, indoor air quality enhancements at all campuses, and Shield testing weekly at each building.
COVID-19 Cases Increase
Despite our best efforts, we have seen an increase in COVID-19 cases in our community and throughout the state. At this point, the COVID-19 cases are not originating in the school buildings. We are tracking these numbers weekly and posting them on our websites in both District 75
and District 120
We remain in daily communication with the Lake County Health Department and are following their protocols.
We ask you to remain mindful of precautions and to continue to follow our recommended protocols: Wash your hands, wear your masks and maintain social distancing whenever possible. And, as always, please keep your children home when they are sick or showing symptoms of illness.
We are prepared to take preventative measures whenever necessary. This may include isolation of those who test positive for COVID-19, quarantine for those who have been exposed, and implementing an adaptive pause. Adaptive pause is not quarantine, but a short time period (typically 24-72 hours) to gather information for a contract tracing investigation. It could be used for various-sized groups, from a selected few in a classroom to everyone in the building. In the event of an adaptive pause, e-learning would be utilized for the affected students. Your school administrators will inform you how to access remote learning should we need to conduct an adaptive pause.
We are fortunate during this school year that e-learning has been limited to individuals or small groups of students. We will do our best to not implement e-learning for all. This includes weather-related school closings. On days where inclement winter forces schools to close students in both Districts 75 and 120 will not be asked to attend school remotely. We will treat those situations as traditional snow days. Schools will be closed and students and staff will have the day off.
Please contact your principals if you have any questions. We hope you and your families remain healthy and safe during this coming holiday season.
Dr. Kevin Myers
Districts 75 and 120
August 23, 2021
Parents and guardians of Districts 75 and 120 students,
With our students back in our schools, we want to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 so we can keep children from missing school days due to quarantine and illness.
In order to shorten or eliminate the quarantine period for students or staff who have been exposed to COVID-19, the Illinois Department of Public Health has outlined “Test-to-Stay” protocols. It allows asymptomatic students to avoid quarantine by testing negative on days one, three, five and seven after being exposed to COVID-19. Alternatively, students not showing symptoms could shorten the quarantine period from 10 to 7 days by providing a negative test result on day 5 from the date of exposure.
For District 75 and District 120 students, parents of children in the Test-to-Stay protocol are responsible for providing proof of negative test results. Rapid antigen tests are allowed, but a PCR test is preferred. A test-at-home kit result is not acceptable. Information on some testing locations can be found near the end of this letter.
How is exposure defined?
Exposure is when a person comes into close contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive, meaning they were less than 3 feet from the infected person for 15 minutes total or more during a 24-hour period. Parents/guardians will be notified if their child is a close contact.
For unvaccinated students:
The Test-to-Stay option will allow asymptomatic students to stay in school if they were exposed to the virus as “close contacts” by testing negative on days one, three, five and seven following exposure.
If they choose not to participate in the Test-to-Stay protocol, they could quarantine for seven calendar days with no symptoms and provide a negative PCR test result taken on day 5 from the date of exposure.
Without either of these testing options, the child would have to be quarantined at home for 10 calendar days from the last day of exposure with no symptoms.
For vaccinated students:
No quarantine, but it’s recommended that the students get a negative result from a PCR test three to five days after exposure.
If the student shows symptoms or signs of illness, the student would have to quarantine until parents can provide proof of a negative PCR test.
Anyone testing positive for COVID-19 would have to isolate for 10 calendar days from the onset of symptoms and may return on day 11 if symptom-free.
Where to be tested:
Some possible locations that provide testing are listed below:
Please remember that masks are required indoors for all events at District 75 and District 120 buildings and schools. This includes curriculum nights, athletic activities, clubs and extracurricular events. We continue to ask parents and guardians to keep their children home if they are sick or showing symptoms of illness.
If you have questions about the Test-to-Stay protocol, please contact your school office.
To our District 75 and 120 families:
The leaders of both the elementary and high school districts continue to work through a set of COVID mitigation guidelines designed to offer your children the best possible education in a safe and responsible way. We will provide details on these guidelines sometime next week.
In the meantime, we’re excited to introduce to you a new program that will make educating our students during a pandemic a little bit easier. Beginning in about the second week of school, students and staff will have the option of participating in a non-invasive COVID-19 test on a weekly basis.
The tests, provided by SHIELD Illinois and administered by Passport Health, will be provided at all of our schools at least once a week at no cost. Each test will take only a few minutes to administer during the school day with results available in 24 hours. Students will simply provide a saliva (spit) sample.
Families must sign up in order for their student(s) to participate. A Google Form will be sent to all parents and guardians of students in Districts 75 and 120. Your child will not be allowed to participate in the testing process without your consent.
SHIELD testing is a proactive approach taken by both School Districts 75 and 120 to mitigate the risk of infection for our students, staff, and school communities. The District is also following CDC guidelines on masking and continuing protocols such as disinfecting, hand-washing, and social distancing of at least three feet. We also ask that parents and guardians keep students home if they are sick or showing any COVID-19 symptoms.
The testing offers some advantages to students.
Testing will eliminate the lengths of quarantine in many cases, allowing more children to remain in school.
The test comes with no cost to schools or families.
The test is non-invasive and does not require a healthcare professional.
Results of these tests will be sent to parents, the school district, and the Illinois Department of Public Health. Results and personal information are protected under HIPPA (the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).
Watch for more details from us about this COVID-19 testing program in the near future.
Dr. Kevin Myers
Superintendent, Districts 75 and 120
Superintendent’s Bi-Weekly Message, 5-26-2021
End of School Year
As a reminder, the school year ends for Mundelein High School on Thursday, May 27, and for the District 75 elementary schools on Thursday, June 3.
Planning for the Coming School Year
With the school year winding down we are already preparing for the 2021-2022 school year.
The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has issued a resolution that all schools will have in-person learning for the coming school year. The resolution provides one exception to in-person learning. Remote learning in the context of 105 ILCS 5/10-30
and 105 ILCS 5/34-18.66
would still be required for students who are both not eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine and also under a quarantine order. Students who do not meet these criteria may be eligible for home/hospital instruction pursuant to 105 ILCS 5/14-13.01
For your planning, the dates for the opening of school in August are listed below:
Wednesday, August 11 Institute Day, both districts – no student attendance
Thursday, August 12 First full day of school for all students in grades 1 – 12
Monday, August 16 Institute Day, District 75 only; Student attendance District 120
Tuesday, August 17 School resumes for all students
COVID-19 Vaccines for anyone 12 and older
A reminder that Mundelein High School will host vaccines for anyone 12 years of age and older on Thursday, May 27 from 3 to 9 pm. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by a parent/guardian. Please print, sign and bring the consent form: COVID Vaccine Informed Consent
This will be the last regular Bi-Weekly message of the school year. However, we will continue to stay in touch and will contact you when necessary.
Have an enjoyable summer, everyone!
Dr. Kevin Myers