June 10, 2020
Dear Newton School Community Members,
I hope this email finds you well and looking forward to more normal activities this summer. I wish I could give more details on the plan for re-opening in August but that's not possible at this time.
As we all may have experienced, there are guidelines and orders given by authorities/bureaucrats on one day only to be retracted days later (sometimes only hours later). If you're having a difficult time knowing the difference between orders, recommendations, and guidelines then you're certainly not alone. While I am encouraged more each day, I am angered as I reflect upon the seemingly endless decisions made on the national, state, and even local levels in regards to Covid-19 that make absolutely no sense. Having done my own consistent research of data and facts regarding Covid-19, I have a serious lack of confidence in the information and data put forward by the media and "those in charge."
If you've visited any restaurants in the past few days, you've probably noticed that some are either ignoring or confused about the requirements of reopening. I've been to a couple that are operating much like a restaurant prior to the lockdowns. No masks, no social distancing requirements, etc. However, other restaurants haven't even reopened for dine-in yet!
The reopening of school districts in Ohio might be as inconsistent from one district to another in August as the reopening of restaurants have been. Please know that our primary responsibility is to provide a safe and healthy environment for students and staff. This does not change. We must implement practical, effective, and sustainable protocol to ensure that we contain the spread of the virus as best we can. However, there is no such thing as a risk level equal to zero! Each day, all of us take tolerable levels of risk to live our lives and be productive. This will always be the case.
It is my hope and prayer that Newton will reopen in August in a manner more closely resembling a normal school day but with a few exceptions. We will no doubt establish more hand washing routines, hand sanitizer will be abundant throughout the building, deep cleaning of certain areas will be performed frequently, clear expectations for students and parents about checking temperatures and staying home when sick will be established, etc. I have heard from many parents and students that want to come back to school and that they hope for a school day that is more normal than not.
As we collect more information and get directives from Governor DeWine, we will provide that to all students and parents so that we can begin next year with clear expectations. For now, take care and have an enjoyable summer with your family. Best wishes!
Only at Newton!!!