During its special meeting held on Monday, August 9, 2021, the Rochester CUSD #3a Board of Education unanimously approved the return to school plan for the 21-22 school year. “Our ultimate goal is to create conditions where teachers teach and students learn in as safe of an environment as possible with little transmission of COVID-19,” said Superintendent Dan Cox.
A highly discussed piece of the plan is all students, staff, and visitors ages 2 and older will be required to wear face masks indoors at school. This includes all District transportation such as school buses and driver education vehicles. In general, people do not need to wear masks when outdoors. Recognizing that there are strong feelings on each side of the masking issue Superintendent Cox pointed out where everyone did agree and that is that we all want our students in school for full days with as little disruption as possible when he reported on recent Thoughtexchange results.
Other components of the plan detail changes to the definition of close contacts, contact tracing, and quarantine. With universal masking in place, individuals do not need to be considered close contacts or contact traced in many instances. A summary of the presentation made to the Board may be viewed here.
As the meeting closed, Board members expressed their commitment to continually review the plan and to look for ways to keep moving the District forward to maximize in-person instruction in a safe environment. The full instructional continuity plan may be viewed on the District website.