March 19, 2020
Dear Blue Ridge Academy Families,
Thank you for all of your support and collaboration during this time. The public health crisis created by COVID-19 is not something any of us could reasonably have expected to happen. We have been following the guidance of state and local public health experts on how we can keep all who are part of our school community—students, staff, family members and visitors—safe in the midst of a growing health crisis. We are also following the Executive Order from our governor and Guidance for K-12 Schools.
We recently had a Blue Ridge Board meeting that granted the Blue Ridge Principals and the Blue Ridge board president the ability to close our school temporarily should the need arise. Rest assured, whether we stay open or close, the service and support you receive from the Blue Ridge staff will not change. At this time our school will remain open. However, in order to ensure the safety of our community, we will only be serving you virtually.
We understand that a virtual platform has led to questions surrounding standardized testing. California has requested a waiver from the US Department of Education to suspend State testing for the year. As soon as we have an official update, you will hear from your teacher.
The following supports are still in place:
- Homeschool Teachers (HSTs) will still be available for virtual support and will check-in frequently.
- Enrichment Ordering System (EOS) orders will still be accepted and placed.
- Student Support Services along with Outstanding Direct Instruction (ODI) will still be available for our students.
- You may reach out to your HST if you need more information regarding open and free resources.
- HQTs will hold their regular office hours for high school students and families.
- CPA courses will still continue for high school.
- If there are any changes needed to your special education services, you will be contacted immediately by your case manager.
These supports are designed to help families and student achievement during this time of crisis. Blue Ridge Academy provides amazing homeschool support and resources. This will continue. Our HSTs are experts and they are ready and able to help. Please feel free to share any of these online resources with your family and friends who are not enrolled in our school.
We are always stronger together. We have the privilege to continue to partner with you in your student’s academic journey and will equip you and give you confidence that even through this difficult time, student achievement and growth remain in place. Please be patient with the vendors in our community that are transitioning to serving you virtually. Our homeschool community is strong and will continue.
As promised, we will provide you with regular updates which will be shared through your HST connecting with you, as well as, updates will be posted on our Blue Ridge website. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to the Blue Ridge family. We are here for you!
Special Education Director
COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update to Families
March 12, 2020
We are continuing to closely monitor the coronavirus (now named COVID-19) situation throughout California. We understand that with the strong media coverage, anxieties are heightened and you may have questions.
We want to assure you that every precaution is being taken to ensure the health and safety of you, our students and staff. As we continue to monitor the situation, we would like to provide current information about precautions and preparations we are taking as a school.
As always, the safety and wellness of our students and staff is a priority. We will be monitoring new developments and will continue to reevaluate our steps and actions.
Thank you for your cooperation and support in helping us to maintain healthy and safe learning environments. Any official updates will be posted on our school website.
What Are We Doing Now?
We are closely monitoring the California Department of Health Care Services, the California Department of Public Health - as well as the California Department of Education (CDE) for ongoing information, guidance, and coordination. We will continue to follow their expert recommendations.
Testing: Any site where students gather in groups (testing sites) will be cleaned utilizing EPA-recommended cleaning solutions, methods, and devices. That list can be viewed here.
While public health officials say that there is no need to alter current routines, we are open to alternatives to in-person HST meetings, should that become a necessity.
What Can You Do?
Our team has received CDC recommended strategies for staying healthy during cold and flu season which are:
Handwashing remains our No. 1 defense against illness. Please wash hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- If children are not feeling well, or exhibiting signs of illness at an event or on a field trip, have them check in with an HST. We will notify parents immediately.
- Communicate all health concerns with your physician.
- If employees or children have a fever, please stay home until you are fever-free for 24 hours without medication.
- The CDC does not recommend the use of face masks among healthy individuals, however, it is important that anyone wearing a mask be treated with respect and not fear. N95 respirator masks are not designed for and should not be worn by children.
For general questions about COVID-19 and precautions currently recommended by local counties, please visit the CDC website.
This is an evolving situation and we will update you regularly with important information and instructions. The safety and wellness of our students, staff, and families is our top priority. Unless otherwise informed, please plan for all regular school activities as scheduled.
Thank you for partnering with us.
Hollie Smith and Samantha Haynes
Blue Ridge Academy