I want you to know that there are numerous things being done here in Portland and plans are in place or being created in order to address this ongoing public health challenge.
- We continue to remind all members of the school community to follow standard good hygiene protocols such as hand washing, staying home when sick, and avoiding sharing personal items such as water bottles.
- We continue to engage in routine environmental cleaning throughout the school district, paying particular attention to common areas and high-traffic locations that may be open to the public.
- The BOE Policy Subcommittee spent some time this week reviewing and modifying policies, procedures, and other school district documents that may be relevant to a COVID-19 outbreak, such as our emergency response plans.
- We have spent considerable time reviewing plans for our upcoming Portland High School band/chorus trip to Orlando scheduled for April break. Earlier this week, I participated in a meeting with several superintendents and our health district, Director, Russ Melmed. Right now, there is no need for us to change our plans for this upcoming trip, but we will continue to monitor the severity of any future outbreaks in the United States and plan accordingly.
- I also met with my administrative team this week and have asked them to begin thinking about the possibility of prolonged closure of our schools and to explore with their teacher/department teams our ability to deliver equitable services to students in multiple forms, including remote learning. Whatever we develop, it would be accessible to all our students. Please be assured that the decision to close schools in Portland would never be a decision I make without the guidance and/or the direction of health officials and our local and state government officials. This would happen ONLY in extreme circumstances.
I have also included a number of other helpful links and additional information that may be helpful to you.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
Connecticut Department of Public Health:
Chatham Health District: