Semester Two Plan

Dear Chaminade-Madonna Families: 

We knew that the kick-off of the 2020-2021 school year would look like no other in recent history. I am pleased to inform you that because of the remarkable cooperation of each and every member of the community, we have had virtually no spread of COVID-19 cases which found their way to campus. In all of the positive cases that we became aware of, there was zero additional spread among any members outside of the immediate cohort groups. In each case, all potentially affected members of the cohort were put into 14 day quarantine away from campus within 24 hours of the reported positive test. Immediate action on the part of the school, cooperation with the Broward County Health Department, and cooperation from all of our families has allowed us to mitigate any spread of the reported infections. To date 12 members of the community have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. This is not surprising given the significant rise in reported cases statewide. It should be noted that we started on-campus classes in mid-August whereas most other schools began in late September or sometime in October. While everyone deserves a pat-on-the-back, we must continue to remain supportive and vigilant in all of our efforts to keep everyone healthy -- both on and off campus! 
We have been monitoring all relevant data regarding transmission as it has been made available by the CDC and the Broward County Health Department. In addition, we have been vigilant about respecting all HIPPA regulations regarding the privacy of each individual's right to health information privacy. 
Students, families, and faculty/staff have adapted well to our hybrid model of instruction for the first semester. Moving forward, I am pleased to inform you that we will be resuming normal five-day instructional weeks on campus for ALL STUDENTS beginning the first day of classes in the second semester, January 5, 2021 at 8:00am. Mitigation procedures will remain in place until further notice. As you would expect, we will continually monitor the situation and will make adjustments as warranted (this may include resumption of a hybrid schedule or in the case of a state-mandated stay-at-home-order, fully virtual instruction). 
For the ease of transition for our freshmen and everyone else who may have forgotten, I am including a copy of our rotational schedule, which includes 85-minute class periods, the 60-minute middle block of lunch and test prep., and dismissal times. 
Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the only difference in the second semester schedule is that Wednesdays will now have a full day of classes. Some Wednesdays will be "red" (odd- numbered periods with dismissal at 3:05pm) and some will be "blue" (even-numbered periods with early dismissal at 1:35pm). The first Wednesday of classes on January 6, 2021, will be a "red" day with dismissal at 3:05pm. The following Wednesday (January 13) will be a "blue" day with dismissal at 1:35pm, and so forth, calendar permitting. Please follow the calendar as posted on the homepage of the school website for weeks that may have a change in schedule due to a holiday, testing, etc. 
For students with semester courses, you will be following the SEM2 schedule in place of SEM1 classes, which you will have completed with your exams in December. Questions regarding schedules or other concerns should be directed to your guidance counselor. 
Extra-curricular activities will resume as normal, however, all school-pep rallies, liturgies, and other large gatherings will not resume until further notice. You can locate a schedule of clubs and other activities on our school calendar. We will continue to limit spectators at events and visitors to campus per the Broward County Health Department regulations. All students and faculty/staff, will continue to fill out the daily wellness form, wear masks at all times, observe social-distancing and have a daily temperature check. Visitors will be asked to wear masks at all times, have a temperature check and fill out a waiver form if their purpose on campus exceeds five minutes. 
If you intend to travel over the holidays, we would respectfully request that you quarantine for a full 14 days before returning to campus. While there is no way for us to know where you have been or with whom, please help us to keep the whole community healthy. Students who intend to be on-campus may attend classes virtually until the period of quarantine is ended if it overlaps with the resumption of classes. Please report a self-quarantine or a positive COVID test to Mrs. Carrera in the Wellness Center.
No too long ago, I was listening to a renowned epidemiologist who stated that when we look at the COVID-19 pandemic from a historical perspective, we will refer to it as a "2020 occurrence". He followed-up by saying that there will be a vaccine in the coming months and that therapeutic treatments are being constantly refined and are increasingly more effective. I look at that with hope -we're not out of this yet but if we keep at it, this whole affliction will be one which is taught in history class and not lived in real-time. 
As a community of faith, we grieve and pray with all of you who have lost a loved one. We pray for the world and ask God to console us as we bear every form of suffering that may be ours at this time. 
This is one of my favorite Thanksgiving quotes: 
Thanksgiving is the heart's memory. 
The heart of Chaminade-Madonna remembers you this Thanksgiving. 
Be Well!

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Judith Mucheck, Ph.D.
Head of School
November 13, 2020

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