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Penn Hills School District

Update from the Superintendent - March 5, 2021

I want to thank EVERYONE in our Penn Hills Family for your ongoing patience and cooperation as we continue to navigate this pandemic crisis.  Once again, Penn Hills has pulled together and faced yet another challenge with courage, dignity, and grace.  It is the extreme cooperation and support we have been receiving that has allowed us to host students onsite since the start of school on September 8.  Admittedly, there have been interruptions along the way and challenges that continue to be addressed; however, WE remain thankful that we have been able, so far, to limit COVID-19 exposure in our schools.

As you are aware, EVERY CHILD in the Penn Hills School District from kindergarten through grade 12 now has the opportunity to participate in onsite learning 4 days per week.  We will continue to honor family requests to remain in 100% remote learning mode, and we will do our best to accommodate requests for conversion to onsite learning as families become more comfortable with allowing their students back in school.  PLEASE, keep in mind, however, that there may be a short delay in enacting a change to onsite learning if classroom space needs to be adjusted to help maintain safe distances.  

It is CRUCIAL that ALL members of our Penn Hills Family remain mindful that IT IS NOT BUSINESS AS USUAL within the Penn Hills School District.  Such a relaxed attitude would be reckless and compromises our continued COVID-19 mitigation efforts.  

While quarantines are no longer required following out-of-state travel, the Penn Hills School District intends to continue

  • using Wednesdays as remote learning days for all K-12 students in support of established midweek practice of cleaning and sanitization that extends beyond daily efforts; 
  • requiring masks for ANYONE who is onsite within the Penn Hills School District and encouraging similar of EVERYONE when offsite;
  • maintaining appropriate physical distancing onsite and encouraging similar of EVERYONE when offsite;
  • encouraging frequent handwashing 24/7;
  • restricting student meal consumption to the classroom;
  • restricting student movement throughout the schools;
  • encouraging ANYONE who is not feeling well to remain home; and
  • encouraging ANYONE who has potentially been exposed to COVID-19 to remain home and to contact a PHSD School Nurse for further guidance.

Unfortunately, we have no specific updates to share yet about our annual musicals, seasonal concerts, Prom, or even Commencement; however, please be assured we will do our best to preserve these traditions, even if the format has to be modified to minimize the risk of COVID-19 exposure.

We also ask K-12 families to start thinking about optional summer programming that Penn Hills School District is planning as part of academic recovery efforts.  Our current thoughts are that targeted programming will be offered to interested students during the last 2 weeks of June and the first 2 weeks of August.  We purposely want to give EVERYONE the month of July to relax and recharge.  It is anticipated that transportation and student meals will be offered for these 20 summer sessions, which are likely to be hosted from 8:30 am-3:30 pm daily.  More information is forthcoming, along with a family survey to help us gauge how many families are interested in participation.

Finally, we encourage families and staff to visit our Penn Hills School District website (www.phsd.k12.pa.us) for continued COVID-19 updates, which are generally released every 2 weeks.  These updates may be found under the District tab, and the section is marked as **COVID-19​​**.

We cannot thank EVERYONE enough for your support of Penn Hills School District and our efforts to maintain a safe learning and work environment.  We wish EVERYONE continued good health.  As always, please reach out to me directly if you have questions and/or concerns.

 

Sincerely,

Nancy

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