Dear St. Joseph Parents and Students,
On behalf of our Pastor, faculty, and staff of St. Joseph School La Puente we would like to thank you for your continued support throughout the pandemic. We are also extremely grateful for your loyalty and for also trusting us with your children. While everything is slowly opening up and our state progresses into mandating fewer restrictions we wanted to reassure you that your child will receive a high-quality Catholic education while remaining safe throughout the day. Each child will have the ability to practice their faith and receive differentiated instruction specific to each individual child’s needs.
As we have done so throughout the pandemic, St. Joseph School LP will continue to adapt to the mandates issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) and the Archdiocese throughout our summer school program and well into the 2021-22 School Year. In order to limit liability and eliminate negligence, the school may also enforce policies and procedures that may be stricter than current state guidelines. Our core purpose will remain to be committed to developing the whole child through Faith, Family, and Excellence while also making all decisions in the best interest of the children and keeping everyone safe.
We continue to live in an ever-changing public health environment, and we are seeing improvements. However, we must remain disciplined and vigilant. While there are varying points of views and opinions on what is and isn’t necessary, the St. Joseph School community has experienced first-hand what has kept us safe through the most precarious of times. This is why after receiving guidance from the Archdiocese and the LACDPH St. Joseph School LP will continue to use the same safety protocols and procedures that we currently have in place throughout the summer and at the beginning of the next school year.
- Masking: The State of California announced that masking requirements will remain in place through June 15, 2021, including for all vaccinated individuals. Come June 15th, in accordance with the governor’s plan, the state’s recovery blueprint will be suspended and the tier system regulations on all social and business sectors will be lifted. Even after the fact St. Joseph School LP will maintain its current masking requirements on-campus. Masks will be required on our school campus until further guidance from the Department of Public Health and the Archdiocese.
- Vaccine Eligibility Expansion: The most recent CDC and Prevention guidance reflects the thought that vaccinated individuals do not appear to transmit the virus. Individuals 12 years old and up are now eligible to receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The Archdiocese is strongly encouraging all parents and guardians to vaccinate their eligible children. In our most current reopening plan are documents about the vaccination for adolescents (Appendix B). The Department of Catholic School is working with public health to identify ways Catholic Schools can partner to educate and vaccinate students who want to be vaccinated. While there is no mandate for TK-12 students to receive the vaccine to enter school, we believe it’s vital that parents and guardians are informed of the safety and necessity of being vaccinated for COVID-19 to protect their children, families, and friends. If you do get vaccinated you DO NOT have to submit your records to the school.
- Next School Year: Based on the Archdiocese’s discussions with the state and local public health authorities we have been advised that all schools have to prepare for full-time in-person instruction for ALL students. We anticipate all distancing requirements for in-person instruction will be lifted, but in an effort to eliminate negligence we will remain vigilant and disciplined. Furthermore, if an outbreak of any communicable disease were to occur, schools will be required to adhere to certain transmission mitigation rules. We will share any and all new rules for the next school year once we receive them.
- 2021-22 School Year Contingency Planning: While we all pray that the next school year is uninterrupted, prudence dictates that a contingency plan is put in place in the event a surge or a shelter-in-place mandate occurs. Therefore, all schools have been advised to update their distance learning plans and have them ready to be implemented, particularly as the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays approach. As a school we also must be prepared to pivot to distance learning should any particular individual, class, or group of people have to quarantine, shelter-in-place, or have to attend school virtually. Having and implementing distance learning as a contingency – not the primary form of instruction – is an effective way to coexist with any situation that may arise. To best be prepared for any scenario that may take place over summer the following will be implemented at the end of this 2020-21 School Year:
- Individuals will be allowed to keep their current device over the summer after they have submitted a signed copy of the 2021-22 Acceptable Use Policy AUP.
- Registration packets will contain the 2021-22 AUP along with all necessary documents for the next school year. All packets are due 5-24-2021.
- All digital Logins will be valid until August of 2021.
- Individual Student Summer Portfolios with specific differentiated assignments will be issued to all students. Summer portfolios will need to be completed over the summer and are due on the first day of school which is Wednesday, August 11, 2021.
The faculty and staff of St. Joseph School are committed to our loyal and dear families. We will remain vigilant over our children and one another as we continue to persevere through adversity. Ingenuity will steer us through this time of uncertainty and social change. However, it will be implemented with prudence and the preservation of our Catholic identity, and the “Royals” tradition of Faith, Family, and Excellence.
May God Bless You and Keep You All,
Mr. Hayes, M.Ed & M.C.S.A.
St. Joseph School La Puente