We are doing our best to keep you informed and up to date on the rapidly changing COVID-19 outbreak. Please know that we are closely monitoring the situation, and are doing everything we can to keep your children and our staff healthy in a safe learning environment.
As you have likely heard, Governor Jared Polis has declared a State of Emergency for Colorado in response to the Coronavirus, or COVID-19. Ultimately, this decision ensures that the State can access Federal Emergency Assistance funding and does not necessarily mean that anything on the ground is substantially different than yesterday.
Because we share so many campuses with DPS and APS, we will follow the protocols and plans of our district partners in DPS and APS, and if those plans differ from each other (APS vs. DPS), we will keep you informed on any key decision points.
Here is a summary of the latest developments.
DPS announced yesterday a ban on all out-of-state or international school-sponsored trips. DSST will implement the same ban. This is a difficult decision as we know how much our students have been looking forward to these fantastic trips. However, student and staff health safety must come first. Sadly, this means that DSST school trips planned between now and May 1st will need to be rescheduled. “DSST sponsored” means trips that originated with us or that we are paying for, and includes out-of-state and international trips. If your child was participating in a trip, your school will be reaching out to you directly.
No future trips will be planned until further notice, as the May 1st date may need to be extended. Given that circumstances can rapidly change, we will send an update no later than April 10th, with any new information on trips scheduled for after May 1st. Please know that at that point we still may not have definitive news but we will keep you informed of what we know.
Regular School Activities
As of now, all regular school activities will continue as normal, including Parent-Teacher conferences and all other school-based events, including our upcoming College Summit for our high school juniors. However we will be evaluating all guidance and new information in the coming days and keep you informed of any changes.
Online Learning for our Students
In the event that DPS and APS closes schools in the coming weeks or months, we are preparing our capacity to teach students online. Through our Microsoft Teams and Google Classroom platforms, we have the capacity to provide instruction to our students. While we are fortunate to have this capacity, we are currently evaluating how we can best reach each child digitally. Please stay tuned as we continue to solidify our plan.
As of now, our attendance policy will remain the same. However, please reach out to your school’s front office should your child require additional time spent at home to recover from any illnesses. For the time being, Colorado health officials and school districts including DPS and APS have decided that schools are safe places for our students, and that schooling and instruction should continue to operate normally. Therefore, we expect students who are not ill to be at school. This is a dynamic situation, and we will adapt our policies regarding attendance and absences in step with our district partners and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
Both DPS and APS have rigorous standards for cleanliness and hygiene in place in all of their facilities. Both districts are committed to additional cleaning and sanitizing any time there is a case of a highly communicable disease impacting the campus. Both districts also have ample stocks of sanitizing supplies in their warehouses.
Additionally, DSST has taken the steps to conduct daily hygiene audits at our schools, to ensure that soap is available in all restrooms at all times, that hand washing and infection reduction protocols are posted in restrooms and other public areas, and that additional stockpiles of sanitizing wipes and surface cleaning products are available in order to supplement supplies procured by our district partners.
Below you will find a comprehensive list of resources from DPS, APS, and the state of Colorado.
- DPS COVID-19 FAQ
- APS COVID-19 Resources
- Colorado helpline: CO-Help at 303-389-1687 or 877-462-2911, or email COHELP@RMPDC.org. Answers are available in English, Spanish, Mandarin and other languages.
Thank you for taking the time to read this information and stay up to date. Please know that the safety of your children is paramount, and we will continue to monitor the situation and keep you as informed as we are able. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns.