Letter from Mr. Brunink - 1/17/2022

Hello BR Community,

The past couple of weeks have led to many changes regarding how schools must handle positive COVID-19 cases.  Besides the changing of the length of isolation of positive cases and quarantine recommendations, the Ottawa County Health Department has prioritized household close contacts over those that take place in schools. 

The reason for their shift is because of a transmission rate in homes that is as high as 53% according to their data.  This is very different from the rate at our school where the evidence of transmission during school activities is very low.  This is even with almost all of our school's close contacts opting to continue to come to school rather than quarantine at home.

Given the new guidance, we will discontinue school contact tracing of COVID-19.  We will continue to practice preventative strategies going forward, however.  We will continue to notify our health department of all of our positive cases and we will continue to wash hands often.  These changes also do not affect our current mask policy and we will continue to wear masks as we have been doing this entire school year.  The practice of requiring classroom seating charts and distancing however possible for students will also continue as the health department reserves the right to require contact tracing if they see evidence of a potential outbreak or a trend of cases that they would need to investigate.

While policies and procedures are likely to change again and again, perhaps the best thing to do is to live responsibly and as though we have all had an exposure to COVID-19 and want to protect each other from it.  That's what this is all about after all.

Thank you for supporting Black River through all of the difficulties of this pandemic.  

Shannon Brunink, Head of School

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Holland, MI 49423
Phone: 616.355.0055 x302