COVID-19 Testing Program ForStudents and Staff Update
Letter sent to District 225 staff and families
Dear Glenbrook Families,
In response to recent guidance from the Cook County Department of Public Health, the Board of Education approved several revisions to the school district's COVID-19 testing program for students and staff.
To keep our school community safe, students must continue to practice social distancing, wear face coverings, and monitor their health, regardless of vaccination status. If your student is exhibiting symptoms,
please contact the school nurse’s office before sending your student to school.
Below is a summary of the changes:
Students and Staff Participating in Higher-Risk Activities
Unvaccinated students and staff participating in all sports and high-risk activities will be required to take a saliva-based COVID-19 test every week.
Vaccinated students and staff participating in high-risk activities will be removed from the required testing program after submitting a copy of their vaccine card.
Students can upload a copy of their vaccination card online at any time.
All Other Students and Staff
Unvaccinated students and staff are strongly encouraged to take a saliva-based COVID-19 test every week, even if they are not participating in higher-risk activities.
Vaccinated students and staff also have the option of testing on a weekly basis.
Week of August 23
, testing will be available at Glenbrook North on Friday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. and at Glenbrook South on Thursday from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Beginning week of August 30
, testing will be available every Tuesday from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Glenbrook North in the Little Theatre and at Glenbrook South in Room 1193. An additional make-up testing opportunity will be available every Thursday from 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Glenbrook High School District 225
COVID-19 Testing Program For 2021-22 School Year
Letter to families
On Monday, August 9, 2021, the Board of Education approved the Plan to Resume In-Person Learning for the 2021-22 School Year
. As part of this plan, a COVID-19 testing program will be implemented for students.
As shared in an email sent by the District on Tuesday, August 10, 2021, all students and staff will be required to take a COVID-19 test between August 18-20, 2021, regardless of vaccination status. Testing will be facilitated during a student’s physical education class. Students not enrolled in a physical education course can visit the testing room at any time from 7:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Glenbrook High School District 225 has partnered with the University of Illinois to test students, teachers, and staff members for COVID-19 infection. This notice provides information about the program to allow informed consent for your child to participate in the testing program.
By not opting out of the testing program as described below, consent for your child to be tested for COVID-19 infection is presumed. To opt out of the testing program, please see the section below titled, “Can I opt out of testing?”
What is the test?
The SHIELD Illinois test is a free diagnostic test for the COVID-19 virus conducted by collecting saliva (spit). The test was developed by the University of Illinois and has been made available at no charge to all schools in Illinois by the Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Public Health.
Below are resources that provide additional information about the SHIELD Illinois test:
As a reminder, test participants should not eat or brush their teeth 45 minutes prior to the test.
How often will your child be tested?
We are arranging for our testing partner (Passport Health) to test all students between August 18 and 19, 2021 during a student’s physical education class. A testing make-up date is scheduled on August 20, 2021.
All students and staff will have the ability to test weekly. Students participating in athletics and other high-risk activities will be required to test weekly.
These activities include:
- All In-Season Athletic Teams
- Glenbrook Symphony Orchestra
- Theatre / Drama / Crew
- Dance Activities
Information regarding testing times and locations for the week of August 23, 2021 will be shared in the near future.
Can I opt out of testing?
For students participating in high-risk activities, weekly testing is required regardless of vaccination status. Students that opt out of testing will not be permitted to participate in high-risk activities.
All other students are permitted to opt out of testing by submitting a completed opt-out form
. Completed forms should be brought to the testing room when the student’s physical education class is scheduled for testing.
Can I submit a test result from my own doctor?
Yes. Students may submit test results from their doctor as long as the test result is documented on an official correspondence from a licensed medical professional. In addition, test results can be dropped off in the testing room at each school on any designated testing day.
How will I know if my student tests positive?
The school district will receive the results of your student’s test and will notify you separately of any positive results. Results will be received within 24 hours of the testing day.
What should I do when I receive positive test results?
If your student’s test results are positive, please contact your student’s doctor immediately to review the test results and discuss the next steps. You may not send your student back to school without a note from your student’s doctor that indicates your student is no longer positive for the COVID-19 virus.
Tests sometimes produce incorrect negative results called “false negatives” in people who have COVID-19. Therefore, if your student tests negative but has symptoms of COVID-19, or if you have concerns about your student’s exposure to COVID-19, you should contact your student’s doctor.
Who will receive my student’s test results?
In addition to you receiving your student’s test results, the school district and the Illinois Department of Public Health (“IDPH”) will also receive your student’s test results, consistent with IDPH guidance and the Illinois Control of Communicable Disease Code.
Do I need to take any other action?
No other action is required if you consent for your student to be tested for COVID-19 infection pursuant to the above terms. To opt-out of the testing program, please submit a completed opt-out form.
Plan To Resume In-Person Learning 2021-22
Letter from Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns to families
Dear District 225 Families,
I hope you are enjoying a fun and safe summer break. I am excited to have all our students back for full in-person learning for the 2021-22 school year.
Recently, Governor JB Pritzker announced beginning immediately schools across the state will require masks to be worn indoors by all teachers, staff, students and visitors regardless of vaccination status. This is in response to the recent updated guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Illinois State Board of Education updated its guidance to reflect the recent change. District 225 will adhere to this mandate and require masks to be worn by everyone in our schools. In addition, all indoor sports participants will also be required to follow universal indoor masking regardless of vaccination status.
At the August 9, 2021 board meeting the School Board of Education approved the Plan to Resume In-Person Learning 2021-22, which includes universal masking for students, staff and visitors regardless of vaccination status. The District continues to monitor weekly community transmissions in both Glenview and Northbrook through its metrics dashboard.
Key Takeaways for the new school year:
- Students will return to a normal bell schedule
- All students will have a 45-minute lunch period throughout block 3
- Masks required for all when indoors
- Students in-person learning experiences will have minimized disruptions as much as possible by implementing mitigation strategies
- Remote learning will not be available; however, students who are ineligible for vaccination and under a CCDPH quarantine will be offered homebound instruction for the duration of the quarantine
- PPE such as hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes and face masks will be available
- Sports will return to normal season schedule
- Covid testing program will be available to students and staff as described below:
Due to the rapid increase of positive cases and transmissions in the community, it is critical for the district to have a clear understanding of the presence of the virus in our schools. As a result, all students and staff will be required to take a COVID-19 test between August 18-20, 2021, regardless of vaccination status. The test is a saliva-based assessment, similar to the one used for students last year, but must be administered in person rather than a sample drop off. Testing will take place onsite at Glenbrook North in the Little Theatre and Glenbrook South in the Lyceum between 7:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m between August 18-20, 2021.
Starting the week of August 23, only students participating in athletics and other higher-risk extra-curricular activities as determined by the principal are required to take a COVID-19 test once a week, regardless of vaccination status. Additionally, all other students and staff may opt in to weekly testing.
Glenbrook North in the Little Theatre
- Tuesdays - 7:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
- Fridays - 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Glenbrook South in the Lyceum
- Mondays - 7:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
- Thursdays - 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Testing will be made available to all students who are not involved in these activities on an optional basis. The testing program is funded by the state and is a mitigation step to reduce the spread of the virus. It is important to understand that guidance from the CDC, IDPH and ISBE continues to evolve as public health conditions fluctuate. More information regarding testing for student athletes and those participating in higher-risk activities will be forthcoming.
We believe the 2021-22 Plan is the next phase in bringing more normalcy to our schools. To help maintain a safe and healthy school environment, we are continuing to ask parents to fill out the voluntary vaccination survey that can be found in PowerSchool prior to the first day of school. The survey will ask for your students vaccination status and if he or she has been exposed to COVID-19. This information will help the District with contact tracing and other mitigation efforts throughout the school year. Please note that these submissions will be kept confidential and only certain staff will have access to the information.
Thank you for all your continued support as we navigate these unprecedented times. The first day of school begins August 18 with both schools following their normal bell schedules. Please review our FAQ on what to expect this fall. I look forward to seeing our returning students in the halls and meeting our new students this school year.
Dr. Charles Johns
End of 2020-2021 School Year
Letter from Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns to families
Dear District 225 Families,
As this school year comes to an end, I want to thank you for your support of our district, staff and students.
We started the year not knowing when we would return to the classroom, and our community has been incredibly patient and supportive as we navigated the pandemic. Thank you for your understanding and flexibility as students and staff have integrated from remote learning, back to a traditional setting.
Recently, the Illinois State Board of Education adopted a resolution supporting a return to full in-person learning starting next school year. With the adoption of the resolution, we are excited to move forward with our plans for the next school year. The District is still waiting to hear from the ISBE, but we want to be proactive with what the 2021-2022 school year will look like.
At this time, we expect all students will return for in-person learning five days a week beginning in the fall. The schools will follow their traditional bell schedule. More information will be provided as we get closer to the 2021-2022 school year.
We are expecting clear guidance for schools from the Cook County Department of Public Health, Illinois State Board of Education, and the CDC, which will inform us if masks will be required or not for the next school year.
Thank you for your continued support and patience throughout this school year. I hope you have a great summer break. For our graduates, we are very proud of you and look forward to learning of your successes and accomplishments in the years to come.
Superintendent, Dr. Charles Johns
2021 Spring Break Travel
Letter from Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns to families
Dear District 225 Families,
As we look forward to Spring Break, which will run from Monday, March 22, through Friday, March 26, District 225 anticipates it will not have an Adaptive Pause, and classes will resume on March 29.
If you plan to travel for Spring Break, please follow Cook County Department of Public Health's (CCDPH) guidelines. We ask you to check their website frequently, as quarantine requirements continue to change. These guidelines currently align with the City of Chicago’s Emergency Travel Order guidance. As a reminder, CCDPH continues to strongly discourage non-essential travel.
The following summary may be helpful:
• Domestic Travel: Take a diagnostic COVID test (rapid or PCR) no more than 72 hours before you return to Cook County or upon return to Cook County. Once negative test results are submitted to and reviewed by the Nurse’s Office, no quarantine is required.
• International Travel: Take a diagnostic COVID test (rapid or PCR) 3-5 days after you arrive home and continue to quarantine for a full 7 days after your return. Once negative test results are submitted to and reviewed by the Nurse’s Office, the quarantine will end after day 7.
• Students who choose not to take a COVID test must quarantine for 10 days after return from any travel.
• Students who have had COVID-19 and can provide confirmation of a positive diagnostic test do not have to quarantine after travel (for 90 days after their COVID-19 diagnosis).
In all cases, those who have traveled must continue to:
• Monitor for symptoms for 14 days after returning from travel
• Practice social distancing, mask-wearing, and hand hygiene
The District will continue to follow state and local safety guidance to reduce COVID-19 risk for our schools and communities. The safety of our students and staff is a top priority to us. We rely on you to share this responsibility to keep our schools safe and share your travel plans with the school’s Attendance Office to record the appropriate quarantine period.
Thank you for your cooperation, support, and patience.
Dr. Charles Johns
Important Dates for 2021
Letter from Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns to families
Dear District 225 Families,
I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I hope that your Winter Break was a healthy and restorative one. As we begin to wrap up the first semester and look to the second half of the school year, I want to thank you for your patience and support during this unprecedented year. Our entire school community has faced a lot of unique challenges and uncertainties this fall with grace and conviction.
As we head into 2021, I want to take this opportunity to remind you of important dates:
- Monday, January 4: Adaptive Pause continues and school resumes with remote learning
- Monday, January 4 or Tuesday, January 5: District sends information via email on teacher status of remote or in-person
- Wednesday, January 6: Deadline for survey completion indicating preference for in-person or remote instruction for the January 19 - March 19 time frame (see message sent on December 28)
- Monday, January 11 - Thursday, January 14: Final exams administered remotely
- Thursday, January 14: Notification to families of district plans for either half-day or full-day in-person instruction
- Tuesday, January 19: Second semester begins in either the hybrid (half-day) or full-day model
Planning for January 19 In-Person Instruction
I also want to acknowledge the feedback we are receiving from many parents urging a safe reopening. I assure you that we are planning to resume in-person instruction on Tuesday, January 19, 2021. This will either be half-day (hybrid) or full-day, depending on the survey results and our classroom capacity. Remote instruction will continue to remain an option for all students.
On December 28, an email was sent to each family regarding the Second Semester Learning Plan Survey. We are exploring the possibility of whether full-day attendance may be possible within the current six-foot social distancing requirements. Students and parents will be notified on Thursday, January 14, if in-person learning will be half-day or full-day.
In the meantime, we continue to review the health metrics daily and have seen an improvement in the indicators that moved us to an Adaptive Pause. Here is our webpage dedicated to COVID-19 updates.
Daily health certifications will continue to be required for all students and staff as they enter the buildings. Please remember that these certifications can be done via cell phone prior to coming to school. Face coverings and social distancing will also continue to be required at all times in the buildings.
Students traveling out-of-state must complete a 10-day quarantine period, recommended by the Centers for Disease Control, before returning to in-person instruction. Students must return to Illinois by January 9 in order to attend school in-person on January 19. For student athletes who will be coming into the buildings beginning January 4 for one-on-one coaching during Adaptive Pause, please make sure that you follow the 10-day quarantine requirement.
COVID Testing Pilot
As you may know, the Board of Education approved a pilot COVID-19 testing program for students and coaches in extracurricular activities. This program is just one of many mitigation efforts to reduce the possibility of spread of COVID-19 in our school community. The results of the testing pilot are provided on our metrics webpage. The test is a non-diagnostic surveillance test. The pilot has proven very successful, and the District may consider expanding testing to all students attending in-person instruction.
Finally, while initial reports on two vaccines look promising, they may not be available to most of us until later in the spring. I urge you to continue to social distance, wear a mask, wash your hands, stay informed and shrink your social bubbles.
Thank you for your cooperation, support, and patience. On behalf of the Board of Education and administration, I wish you a happy new year.
Schools transition to Adaptive Pause
Glenbrook High School District 225 will be making a transition to a full Adaptive Pause beginning Wednesday, November 18. This means that all classes will move to e-learning beginning this Wednesday. Unless there is a significant improvement in conditions in the short term, this Adaptive Pause will run through Monday, January 18 (the Martin Luther King Day holiday). Students are expected to return to hybrid instruction on Tuesday, January 19, the first day of the second semester. This transition to a full Adaptive Pause will provide a natural quarantine period for staff and students after the Thanksgiving and winter breaks, reducing the probability that the virus will be brought into our schools.
COVID-19 cases have risen at a significant rate and are continuing to grow. Our district’s two primary indicators to inform a move to an Adaptive Pause have been at the “Substantial” level for two consecutive weeks in the two geographic areas that we closely monitor, North Cook County and Glenbrook zip codes. In addition, the Chief Medical Officer of the Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) has told our township superintendents that schools should “strongly consider remote learning given the presence of sustained community transmission.” As we head into the Thanksgiving and winter holiday season, we know that people’s travel and groupings will likely exacerbate current risk levels. Both the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the CCDPH have asked the public to limit unnecessary travel.
A review of options for ongoing extracurricular and athletic programs is underway and will be shared soon. This review includes a careful evaluation of IDPH, CCDPH, and Illinois High School Association recommendations, along with the current community conditions and holiday considerations noted above. Each program is different and is being assessed on a case-by-case basis.
While the decision to pause in-person instruction is difficult, we believe that it will create a safer environment for all and help put us in position to return to the hybrid model in the second semester. Please continue to do your part by practicing the 3 Ws: wear a mask, watch your distance, and wash your hands frequently.
We know that students may have questions specific to their own sports, activities, or clubs. They will receive detailed information about any changes in a separate email from their coaches or sponsors.
District advances to Step 3 of the Fall Learning Plan
Students return to in-person learning on a hybrid schedule starting October 5
At the special meeting on September 21, the Board of Education approved the implementation of a two-week phased-in approach to a hybrid model beginning on October 5. This represents Step 3 of the Fall Learning Plan for 2020-21, where students will return to in-person learning on a hybrid schedule. The approach is expected to phase in students by grade level and will reach full implementation for all students by October 20.
“It is our responsibility to provide the best experience for our students, and we know that means a return to in-person instruction as soon as possible,” said Board President Bruce Doughty. “After careful thought and consideration for the safety of our students and staff, along with balancing the academic and social/emotional needs of our school community, we strongly believe that forward movement is the best course of action.”
The Board of Education reviewed various health metrics in order to determine moving from Step 2 to Step 3, including the number of new cases per 100,000, test positivity rates, increased number of cases, and specifically youth cases. In addition, the Board considered operational metrics including sufficient access/inventory of personal protective equipment (PPE), the ability to maintain 6 foot social distancing in learning spaces, and necessary personnel. The district will comply with public health guidelines including requiring students and staff to wear face masks, maintain social distancing standards and participate in daily health screenings, for example, as it moves into a return to in-person learning.
“We are excited to welcome back our entire student population and have been working each day since the start of the pandemic to plan for this opportunity to reunite on our campuses,” said Superintendent Dr. Charles Johns. “There are still many challenges we can expect to encounter; however, we believe that beginning the year remotely provided a strong foundation to move into hybrid learning.”
In the coming week, additional information about the implementation of hybrid learning will be emailed directly to students and parents. In addition, should a family determine that their student would benefit from remaining in an E-Learning environment, the school will accommodate this preference.
For more information, please continue to visit the district webpage dedicated to the reopening of school, which includes the current Learning and Operations Plan and outlines the different phases of reopening.
Update from the School Reopening Advisory Committee
District moves into Step 2 of the plan
The School Reopening Advisory Committee composed of students, parents, staff, administrators, an infectious disease specialist, and one Board member meet on a scheduled basis to discuss the current Learning and Operations Plan and consider adjustments to the school environment, including movement through the different phases of reopening. The committee will provide four scheduled updates throughout the fall, August 28, September 25, October 9 and 23. Additional meetings and updates may be added, depending on the progress of COVID-19 and the learning plan.
Date of Meeting: August 17, 2020
Summary of Discussion:
In its inaugural meeting, the School Reopening Advisory Committee made introductions, established shared expectations, and reviewed the 2020-21 Learning and Operations Plan.
The committee reviewed the current rates of building utilization by staff and students. Included in the discussion was a review of the impact of quarantines on the summer athletic programs. Additionally, a review of the freshman orientation activities was conducted, including concerns about social distancing enforcement as students passed from one area to another. A review of current state data of new cases and the positivity rates were also included in the discussion.
At this time, two of the seven indicators used to assess readiness to move between phases meet the established targets, while five remain in progress.
One of the indicators centers around creating a stable and consistent learning environment that upholds the district’s instructional integrity. By gradually adding students, we will be able to determine if there is an increase in transmission, which will inform whether additional students can be brought into the schools. It is crucial to avoid a series of opening and closing of the school as transmission levels ebb and flow. Having stable and consistent instruction with a certified teacher, even in an E-Learning environment, is preferred to any alternatives.
Beginning on September 8, the district will move into Step 2 of the plan. This phase will bring in several hundred students, divided up into cohorts, meeting in the morning or afternoon, and on alternating days. Students, with and without disabilities, who have identified support needs in the areas of attendance, grades, interventions, social/emotional wellbeing, medical, or academic supports may be eligible to attend campus. Students with any of these needs are referred to their respective Student Services team for consideration. The Student Services teams meet weekly to review referrals and data points to compile a list of eligible students. Through this process, additional students can be added in Step 2 as needs and opportunities are identified. Similarly, the North Suburban Special Education District (NSSED) is committed to providing in-person instruction for students in the Teaching Life Skills (TLS) program, initially bringing in small groups of students, half days in the morning or afternoon, two days per week. Bus transportation services will be provided to all students that have purchased a bus pass. Routes will be operated in the morning, mid-day, and in the afternoon. Information regarding bus transportation will be announced by the end of next week.
With this announcement, the Student Services teams from each school will begin developing a list of eligible students based on identified needs. School counselors or other members of the Student Services teams will contact the students and the families of those selected to provide further details.
Next Committee Meetings:
August 31, September 14, and 21
For more information, please continue to visit our webpage dedicated to the reopening of school.
DISTRICT 225 TO START FALL SEMESTER WITH E-LEARNING UNDER FOUR-STEP PLAN APPROVED BY THE BOARD
This evening, the Glenbrook District 225 Board of Education approved the Learning and Operational Plan that the District’s administrative team shared with parents on Friday. Under the plan, all District 225 students and staff will begin the 2020-2021 school year as scheduled on Wednesday, August 19, under an E-Learning format.
STEP 1: E-LEARNING BEGINS AUGUST 19
The E-Learning experience will be significantly different from what took place in the spring, when state mandates limited our ability to deliver a high-quality E-Learning experience. Under the 2020-2021 E-Learning model:
● Students will follow a structured schedule with required synchronous learning experiences as part of every class as new content is introduced by teachers. Additional tiers of academic services will be available as needed to support student success and well-being.
● Assessments will be delivered, due dates will be enforced, grades will count, and attendance will be taken.
● Students will be expected to activate their camera when participating in synchronous E-Learning.
● Athletics, extracurricular and co-curricular activities will be available through a combination of on-campus and virtual participation opportunities based on guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and Cook County Department of Public Health (CCDPH) and applicable Illinois High School Association (IHSA) requirements.
● We will implement a social-emotional learning curriculum, integrated into PE and Health courses, that will address essential topics, such as creating a collective community; building resilience; coping with anxiety, fears, and stress; and accessing resources and supports.
We know there are many questions about returning to school, including how students will pick up textbooks, schedules and supplies. Our administrative team is currently working to address these items and will communicate via email with additional instructions in the coming week.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Please visit the District’s website to view the District’s four-step plan to bring students back to in-person learning when it is safe and appropriate to do so, as well as responses to some Frequently Asked Questions. We will continue to communicate important information directly to parents, staff and students through email and will regularly update this FAQ document. If you have questions or comments, please send them to email@example.com
Like you, we are proud of our schools and of the well-rounded experience offered to each student. While it is going to look drastically different from what we all know, we are confident in our ability to start strong on August 19 and to deliver high-quality, meaningful and engaging academic and extracurricular experiences for all students throughout the 2020-2021 school year. We are committed to excellence in the 4 A’s: Academics, Athletics, Activities, and the Arts.
On behalf of the entire team at Glenbrook High School District 225, as always, we thank you for your ongoing support and look forward to seeing our students this fall.
District 225 Administration