Message from our Superintendent
As we wrap up this year, I know many of your thoughts are turning toward what comes next. In addition to your own summer plans, you might be thinking about school sports, band camp, or summer intervention. I don’t know about you, but navigating all the guidance and orders about allowable and safe behaviors as the state reopens has me scratching my head. In my personal life, I’m only charged with interpreting those things for the people in my home. In contrast, navigating through these uncharted waters professionally has a direct impact on students, families, and the community - on you.
As a school district, we are charged with making decisions that are safe and accessible to all students. We are fortunate to have access to many experts and colleagues. We also have to comply with Hamilton County Public Health and local safety measures. We rely on guidance from many regulating bodies, including the Governor’s office, the Ohio Department of Education, the Ohio High School Athletic Association, to name a few. To that end, I’d like to provide some insight into what we are doing - and what we are not able to do at this time - here at Loveland Schools.
Our team has started working on potential plans for next fall and the start of the new school year. We are currently awaiting guidance that will allow us to move these plans forward. At this time, we are lacking protocols and important parameters for things like providing appropriate distancing on school busses and in classrooms. We are waiting for guidance with respect to students wearing masks, including our very young students and students with disabilities. These are only two examples of important variables for our schools for which guidance is currently lacking.
Like the general public and media, we learn about the Governor’s roll-out of the Responsible RestartOhio plan during the press conferences. We are not privileged with prior notification or additional instruction as it relates to actions taken. As each task force finalizes its protocols and guidance supporting the re-opening of individual sectors of the economy, there are unintended consequences when these sectors cross over into others. For example, the Governor has allowed the opening of youth sports, childcare, day camps, and specific training for Ohio High School Athletic Association non-contact sports. However, the statewide order to limit groups of 10 remains in place, and so does the order to keep school buildings closed until June 30.
We strive to be responsive to your questions regarding compliance with orders; your concerns about the safety of both adults and children in our schools; and about how we plan to “open up for business” as more and more activities are being permitted. The task at hand is daunting, as we are also navigating the state budget cuts impacting the current year’s funding, making this a profoundly challenging time and situation.
When we open up for the activities and programs that are important to education and to the community, we remain committed to making decisions that prioritize the safety of each of our students and staff. I appreciate your patience and understanding as we anticipate the guidance that will allow us to create the best plan - and backup plan - for our school district.
In service to our Tigers,
Dr. Amy Crouse, Superintendent
Posted: Wednesday, May 20, 2020