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Coronavirus Update: Stay Home, Stay Healthy – SVSD Essential Services to Continue, Playground and Field Closures
Dear Snoqualmie Valley School District families,
Yesterday, March 23, Governor Inslee issued a statewide “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” Order in an attempt to prevent further spread of COVID-19 in Washington State. The order requires everyone to stay home for at least two weeks, midnight March 25 through midnight April 8, and may be extended longer if needed. His proclamation will: require every Washingtonian to stay home unless they need to pursue an essential activity, ban all gatherings for social, spiritual and recreational purposes, and close all businesses except for essential businesses. Services provided by K-12 schools are among those identified as essential and will continue. Find more details on the governor’s order, visit coronavirus.wa.gov.
The Snoqualmie Valley School District is committed to supporting our state’s efforts to “flatten the curve” of this pandemic by exercising social distancing, reinforcing good hygiene, and enabling staff to work remotely when possible. We also recognize the essential role our schools play in supporting students and families. Therefore, we will continue to provide food services, laptop/internet support, child care support for critical roles supporting the health of our community, and distance learning opportunities while schools remain closed. Here’s an update on our continuing services:
- Food Services – free weekday breakfast and lunch meals “to go.” Click here for details including pick-up location, times, and other food assistance available in our community.
- Laptops – The District has been lending laptops to families of students in grades K-5 who did not have a way for their student to access online learning from home, based on those who responded to the district's survey regarding this need. If you missed this opportunity and still need assistance with a device, please email SVSDinfo@svsd410.org as soon as possible. If there are still SVSD families who need to borrow a device from the district, we’ll arrange for an alternate pick-up time on Thursday (3/26) or Friday (3/27) during the lunch hour (12-12:30 p.m.) at one of four schools designated for Grab and Go Meals. NOTE: Earlier this year, all SVSD students in grades 6-12 were assigned laptops for use at home.
- Internet Access – The District has placed an order to hot spot devices for families who requested assistance with internet service, however the estimated delivery date is mid-April. In the meantime, Comcast is offering special deals in response to the COVID-19 outbreak: 1) New Internet Essentials customers can receive 60 days complimentary service, then the monthly fee will default to $9.95/month. Sign up at: InternetEssentials.com. 2) Xfinity WiFi Free for Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots will be available across the country to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers. Visit www.xfinity.com/wifi for a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots.
- Child care – SVSD is partnering with the YMCA and Si View Metropolitan Parks to help meet this need for school-aged children of families who serve in critical health care/emergency response professions. A second survey closed today verifying the needs of local families who provide these vital services, and we’re hoping to begin support for those families by the end of this week. If you are a medical or emergency professional who needs help with child care during this time (and have not yet contacted our district), please email email@example.com with your needs. As more information becomes available, updates regarding child care will be posted here.
SVSD School Buildings and District Office Closure
To help limit staff exposure to COVID-19, further measures are being implemented to limit the number of people in our school buildings. Per the governor’s order, starting Thursday, SVSD schools and the District office, which are already closed to the public, will be closed to most staff as well. After March 25, only staff needed for supporting essential services (food services, tech support, custodial, transportation of food, child care support, financial services/payroll, administration, etc.) as designated by the superintendent, should be in the buildings to perform their roles, while adhering to social distancing.
Most staff will be working remotely and checking email regularly. To find a staff member, please refer to the district staff directory on the website. If you cannot locate a staff member whom you need to contact, please email SVSDinfo@svsd410.org.
Closing School Playgrounds and Ball Fields
The Snoqualmie Valley School District is announcing the immediate closure of all district playgrounds and ball fields, to help safeguard public health as COVID-19 continues to spread in the region and globally. Reasons for this decision include:
- Inadequate social distancing: When large groups gather at play fields and playgrounds, there is a greater risk of Covid-19 transmission.
- Our district is not disinfecting playground equipment/surfaces.
- Our decision is in line with the City of Snoqualmie, City of North Bend, and King County that have also closed playgrounds, sports courts, ball fields and picnic shelters.
- This decision is in line with Public Health of Seattle & King County recommendations for practicing social distancing.
Fields are still open for walking and non-team activities where social distancing (staying 6 feet apart) can be implemented. We understand the families and the community may be disappointed, and we thank you for your understanding.
Public Health Recommendations to Keep your Family Safe
We all need to do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please visit the Public Health Seattle & King County website for more information, and follow these steps to keep yourself and others safe:
- Even if you are not ill, avoid visiting hospitals, long-term care facilities or nursing homes to the extent possible. If you do need to visit one of these facilities, limit your time there and keep 6 feet away from patients.
- Do not go to the emergency room unless essential. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve those with the most critical needs. If you have symptoms like cough, fever, or other respiratory problems, contact your regular doctor first.
- Stay home when sick!
- Practice excellent personal hygiene habits, including washing your hands with soap and water frequently, coughing into a tissue or your elbow, and avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Stay away from people who are ill, especially if you are at higher risk for coronavirus.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects (like doorknobs and light switches). Regular household cleaners are effective.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, unless you've just washed your hands.
- Get plenty of rest, drink plenty of fluids, eat healthy foods, and manage your stress to keep your immunity strong.
We know these changes will not be easy, but they are so important to helping keep our community safe. We will get through this together (just 6 feet apart). Stay home and stay healthy!