With the rise in local COVID cases, I wanted to give a COVID-specific update. As I mentioned last week, we are thankful for the limited impact COVID has had on our school year thus far. We have been able to have all events and activities that were originally on our calendar. In fact, we currently only have two confirmed COVID cases within our student body.
Here is some COVID-related information.
WHAT WE ARE DOING
1- Contact Tracing: Even though the public schools are not currently conducting contact tracing with their students, we still are. I believe this is still a wise step for us to take.
2- School Nurse: One of our two nurses are on campus throughout each school day. All day-to-day COVID decisions are made with their input.
3- Data: We receive daily information from the CDC, the Tennessee Department of Health, and the local Health Department. We also frequently receive input from local doctors.
4- Cleaning: We are still conducting routine cleaning. This includes using an electrostatic sprayer to disseminate hospital grade disinfectant in classrooms and hallways (after hours).
5- Hand Sanitizer: We have hand sanitizer stations mounted throughout our facilities, and elementary students are taken multiple times a day to wash their hands.
6- Masks: Masks are optional. If a student prefers to wear a mask, they are certainly welcome to do so. We have no plans to institute a mask mandate.
7- Our Commitment: We are committed to being on campus as much as possible and operating as closely to normal as we can. I firmly believe our students need social interaction and face-to face instruction.
THE CURRENT IMPACT ON MCS
Substitute Teachers: The biggest impact COVID has had on MCS is that we have a limited number of substitute teachers. That, coupled with a higher need for subs, occasionally creates staffing issues. We are diligently working to address this challenge. If you are interested in being a substitute teacher, the substitute application can be found HERE.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Symptom Awareness: The best way you can help us is by keeping your student(s) at home if they have COVID symptoms. It is easy to assume that symptoms are the result of a cold or allergies, and many times they are. However, only sending your student(s) to school once you are certain it is not COVID will help ensure we are able to remain on campus.
While there has been much in the news about the rise of COVID cases and the impact of COVID on public schools, we are thankful for the limited number of cases and the limited impact it has had on MCS. I am fully aware that this
is not guaranteed to continue and can change in a moment’s notice. We will continue taking the steps we are taking and if circumstances change, we will adjust and handle it accordingly.
We are thankful for the limited impact COVID has had on our school year thus far. While we currently have only three positive COVID cases among our students, faculty, and staff, we have several faculty members in precautionary quarantine due to non-MCS-related exposure. We also have several faculty members out of town for the junior trip to Washington, DC. This, coupled with our shortage of substitutes, has led to brief staffing challenges.
In addition to the staffing challenges, we do not have access to our gym due to construction. This impacts lunch, PE classes, as well as general maneuverability around campus.
After evaluating all factors, we have decided to close on Friday, September 3rd and Tuesday, September 7th (Monday was already closed for Labor Day). This will allow time to complete construction in the gym and time for our quarantined faculty and staff to complete their quarantine period and return to campus. These days will not be online learning days. If at all possible, enjoy the beautiful weather on this extra-long weekend. Information concerning athletics will be sent from the Athletic Office.
Thank you for your understanding.
Here is this week’s update.
Guidance Counselor: We are excited to announce the hiring of Kandice White as our new full-time Guidance Counselor. Mrs. White has a BS in Child & Family Studies with an Education degree, a Master’s in Counseling and Guidance, and an Ed.S. in Counseling and Guidance. She has served as a teacher in area schools as well as a School Counselor at several schools in the region (including MCS from 2012-2016). We are excited about her rejoining our team in October.
Hiring Aftercare Workers: Are you looking for a wonderful opportunity to work with children? MCS Aftercare is hiring individuals to work from 3:00PM-6:00PM. This position is for someone that is reliable, works well with school-aged students, can help with homework, and loves to work in a Christian environment. If you are interested, please submit the employment application found HERE. For more information, please contact Cassie Williams HERE.
STEM Building: Be sure to check out the progress on the STEM Building. You can view the live video feed HERE.
Calling all Substitutes: We are currently accepting applications for substitute teachers. If you are interested in learning more about serving at MCS in this way, please call the office at 865-681-3205 or you can go to the MCS website and download the application and supplemental sub form HERE. We would love to have you join our team.
Coupon Books: Coupon Books are now on sale!! If you would like to order books, you may do so HERE.
COVID: If you have any COVID-related questions or need to pass on COVID-related information, please communicate with us via our COVID email address: email@example.com. If you have any questions about our COVID protocols, please visit our previous post HERE.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out. Have a great weekend!