Governor JB Pritzker announced yesterday that Illinois is on track to enter Phase 4 on Friday, as the result of the effective social distancing measures implemented across the state.
The Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Department of Public Health have worked together to develop requirements and recommendations for schools to resume in-person learning this fall, while keeping students, staff, and loved ones safe and healthy. You can view the guidance at www.isbe.net/Documents/Part-3-Transition-Planning-Phase-4.pdf.
The minimum public health requirements that all public schools must meet as they create local reopening plans in Phase 4 are to:
- Require use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), including face coverings;
- Prohibit more than 50 individuals from gathering in one space;
- Require social distancing be observed as much as possible;
- Require that schools conduct symptom screenings and temperature checks or require that individuals self-certify that they are free of symptoms before entering school buildings; and
- Require an increase in school-wide cleaning and disinfection.
The process of reopening school is going to be a challenge for all school districts. We intend to collaborate on complex tasks and protocols to make sure our schools are safe and ready. I will be setting up team meetings in July for facilities, transportation, health/medical procedures and instruction/support services. These meetings will be both online and in person. Staff, teachers, parents, and community members are welcome and encouraged to attend and provide input.