Health and Safety Update
4 months ago
UPDATE: March 23, 2020
Due to the Governor’s “stay-at-home” order, the Empire Union School District is closing its District Office and support sites to the public, with the exception of the Curriculum and Instruction, Human Resources, and Business Services. This change is effective immediately.
Although the District Office and support sites will be closed to the public, our staff will continue working remotely to provide the essential services needed to keep the District running. The main number for the District Office, (209) 521-2800, will be staffed Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
We are committed to keeping you informed as we continue to work through these closures.
March 20, 2020
We’ve added a list of Parent Frequently Asked Questions to our website that addresses general information about the closures, meals for students, and distance learning. The list of questions is on the Parent Resources page on www.empire.k12.ca.us and it will be updated on a regular basis.
Finally, we are committed to keeping you informed as we work our way through the school closures. We will continue to use our messaging system and website to share updates as needed.
March 18, 2020
Meal pick-up will be available Monday through Friday starting March 19 through April 19, for those 18 years and under. Children must be present to receive a meal. Each child will receive a bagged lunch and a bagged breakfast for the following day. Locations are set up to be picked up at Capistrano Elementary, Hughes Elementary, and Sipherd Elementary. For those students living East of Claus Road, drop-off locations have been established at various bus stops. Exact locations can be found within the 'Parent Resources' link on our district web site.
EUSD will be providing distance learning opportunities for all students grades TK-8. That educational guidance and materials were handed to students in attendance on March 16-18 and mailed home to students not in attendance that week.
The distance learning options, which include educational resources and practice exercises, will be available on school websites in the coming days.
Finally, we are working on providing a hotline for families who need assistance during the school closures. The hotline will provide technical support for online learning, but more importantly, it will provide free counseling services during this trying time. We understand the challenges our families are experiencing and hope that the counseling services will help.
Remember, once school closures begin teachers will be available through Parent Square and/or district email.
Thank you for your patience as we work through these details.
UPDATE: March 15, 2020
After much deliberation, EUSD Superintendent issued an order to CLOSE all schools sites effective this Thursday, March 19 through Sunday, April 5. This decision was not made lightly and the decision was made in the best interest of our students and staff.
By closing on Thursday, this gives our families who need it time to make arrangements for childcare. However, if the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in our County increases between now and this Wednesday, we will close our schools earlier.
During the closure, Empire Union School district will continue to provide much-needed nutrition services to our families with pick-ups at our schools. We will provide the distribution schedule early this week.
We are also working on providing school work for our students to continue in their education while the schools are closed.
Also, with the exception of essential services, we will be instructing the majority of our District staff to work remotely to encourage safety and social distancing.
We understand the concerns and many opinions that are circulating about COVID-19. This executive order was issued by the Superintendent in order to meet the very important needs of my students, staff and families.
March 13, 2020
In alignment with all Stanislaus County Public School Superintendents, Empire Union School District is following the guidelines issued today at 3:00 p.m. by Stanislaus County Public Health Official, Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, MD, MPH, pertaining to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The guidelines are linked below.
Based on Dr. Vaishampayan’s guidance and advice, we are keeping schools OPEN at this time. As a District, we directly rely upon and support the guidance from the County Public Health Official, especially given as medical experts, they are focused on the best interests of the community.
As parents/guardians, EUSD supports your decision to keep your children home amidst the schools remaining open. If you decide to keep your child home due to illness or related concerns to the Coronavirus, it would be considered an excused absence, with the expectation that your student complete their school work that was missed. This excused absence provision applies for any students missing school as of today, March 13, 2020. The absence notification needs to come directly from the parent/guardian, not from the student.
It is important to note that all EUSD schools are taking precautions to thoroughly disinfect our sites using cleaners that are recommended by the CDC to protect against the COVID-19 virus. In addition, we are advising students, parents and staff to practice good hygiene by washing your hands for 20 seconds; using hand sanitizer; coughing or sneezing into your sleeve or tissue; and staying home if you are sick with a fever and other flu-like symptoms.
This is a fluid situation, so please continue to check our website for important updates.
March 9, 2020
This morning, the Stanislaus County Public Health and Health Services Agency announced that two cases of coronavirus are confirmed in our County, pending verification from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). One is a passenger from the Grand Princess cruise ship to Mexico, and the other case is being investigated in order to determine the source of the individual’s infection.
The Empire Union School District takes this very seriously, and we continue to take precautions in our regular cleaning and disinfecting of the school sites. Per Public Health guidance, we are not closing schools at this time, and we will continue to keep the public updated as more information is available.
As a reminder, to help prevent the spread of the flu or any viruses, please continue to practice good hygiene including washing your hands for 20 seconds; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth; and when sneezing or coughing, be sure to cover your mouth by using a tissue. And if you are sick, please stay home.
Over the weekend, the California Department of Public Health issued new School Guidance meant to slow the spread of COVID-19 across the state, reduce the number of people infected, and protect those who are most vulnerable to severe illness.
Per the updated guidelines, effective tomorrow, March 10, 2020, we are restricting or cancelling all non-essential previously approved out of county and out of state travel and field trips to locations that have confirmed “community spread” cases of the coronavirus. The list of locations experiencing community spread will be reviewed daily.
March 3, 2020
We continue to monitor the coronavirus, or COVID-19, situation. As of right now, there are NO confirmed cases in Stanislaus County. We understand there are concerns from parents and the public, and understandably so. This is a new virus and we are still learning from it. However, the health risks remain LOW in Stanislaus County and the general public in California.
Currently, School sites within EUSD are following protocols including:
- Increasing the cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces with a CDC and EPA approved cleaner for “emerging pathogens”
- Changing practices in school cafeterias to prevent the spread of germs
- Increasing hand-washing at all of our facilities and school sites
- Monitoring students’ health based on current guidelines
- Separating students exhibiting flu-like symptoms and arranging for them to be picked up to go home
- Encouraging students, parents and staff to stay home if they have flu-like symptoms
To help prevent the spread of the flu or any viruses, please continue to follow the important tips we previously shared:
- Get an annual flu shot – this reduces flu related illnesses and the risk of complications.
- Practice good hygiene etiquette:
- When sneezing or coughing, cover your mouth by using a tissue. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve.
- Wash your hands after coughing or sneezing. In the absence of soap and running water, use an alcohol based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your face since hands can become contaminated by objects.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home if you have flu symptoms.
Remember – the California Department of Public Health does not recommend the use of face masks for general prevention and says that handwashing provides better protection from infectious diseases.
We continue to work closely with our county public health official and local school districts to ensure we are all up to date on the latest information, and will keep you up to date of any changes or developments affecting our district.
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