Superintendent's Message Regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus)

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April 7, 2020

 

Dear MVROP Community, 

To best protect the health of our students and staff, MVROP is announcing the closure of our campus and programs for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. All instruction for MVROP Career Technical Education (CTE) programs will be conducted solely through virtual learning models unless instructed otherwise. The gravity of this decision is not taken lightly and results from last week’s recommendations from Governor Newsom, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tony Thurman, and Alameda County Superintendent Monroe on the subject of closures. Additionally as of this afternoon, the original six-county Superintendents and collaborating Public Health Officers, made the official announcement to extend campus closures through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. As educators, we are saddened by this decision but remain hopeful if we all do our part to flatten the curve, we can play a critical role in reducing the number of positive COVID-19 cases. Only then can we provide a safe place for education in our schools.

Despite the ongoing and escalating landscape of the COVID-19 global pandemic, MVROP has remained dedicated to serving the students from the Tri-Cities with Career Technical Education (CTE) programming. Even in this ever-changing health crisis, we see the value and importance of education in the daily lives of our students and our staff. We wholeheartedly miss seeing the familiar faces in our classrooms and hallways but are encouraged by the students and instructors who have adapted impressively over a short time to distance learning models of instruction. There is a connection taking place, not only through a new style of instruction via Google Classrooms but on a basic human level of needing to know while operating remotely, we are not alone. We will only continue to improve the remote learning taking place and encourage if students or parents have questions, to contact their MVROP instructor directly.

With each day new information is being provided to help guide MVROP and fellow school districts on how certain aspects of the remainder of the school year will be handled. The California Department of Education (CDE) will share the best way to address and satisfy instructional, budgetary, and overall function requirements in light of the unique set of challenges our schools have experienced this year. We understand the stressors and endless questions COIVD-19 has caused and will continue to be in communication to alleviate those the best we can, as quickly as we can.

We are now entering the most critical phase of the county mandated shelter in place order. As the number of positive cases continues to rise, it remains critical we all remain safe at home, wear face coverings/non-medical masks when conducting limited essential errands, practice social distancing, maintain high levels of personal hygiene, and making a conscious effort to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Throughout these unprecedented series of events, it is important to take care of each other. It is easy to say and even harder to do in practice while navigating the anxiety and stressors surrounding the new roles we each have taken on during the health crisis. We must take each day as it comes and do the best we can. We will get through this and we will be stronger as a result.

 

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP


 

April 3, 2020

 

Dear MVROP Community,  

As our nation, state, and local communities continue to grapple with the escalating levels of positive COVID-19 cases, we are all playing a critical part in reducing positive cases by adhering to the six-county shelter in place ordinance. As a result of the anticipated increased number of positive cases we also are seeing new and widespread announcements from our politicians referencing possible scenarios for the months to come. In the last few days, statements regarding the permanent closure of schools have dominated the headlines. These statements while meant to aid districts and allow them time to develop new plans for operations, contracts, fiscal operations, and traditional school events surrounding graduation, directly conflict with the regional county directive for closures to be maintained through May 1, 2020. The six-county collaboration, including the ACPHD and ACOE, are awaiting medical data to determine how effective the shelter in place has been for the Bay Area, to further analyze the COVID-19 patient data to understand the trends and make the best recommendations for action beyond May 1. 

Factoring these pieces in the COVID-19 ever-evolving landscape, MVROP will continue the suspension of in-class instruction and will maintain providing Career Technical Education (CTE) curriculum through distance learning models. We continue to heed the advice of those who are working night and day to evaluate the medical data being analyzed to help the community remain healthy and safe. There are numerous conversations and plans under development to ensure MVROP programs, staff, and students will continue to remain connected and enriched with the benefits of CTE through this challenging time, regardless of how long it may last.

MVROP encourages the community to continue practicing a high level of personal hygiene, maintaining social distance, and remaining safe in their homes.

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 


 

March 25, 2020

 

Dear MVROP Community, 

This morning the difficult but necessary unified, regional decision to extend school closures and in-class suspension through May 1, 2020 was announced by Bay Area county health officers in collaboration with all county superintendents. This serious and effective mitigation tactic will continue to be implemented to ensure the safety and well-being of students, staff, and the community as a whole during the ongoing spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

MVROP, our JPA Districts, educational organizations throughout the state of California, and nationwide, are all stepping up to the challenge of these limitations for educational services. Each day, new and innovative approaches to the current distance learning “classrooms” are made and are shared among those who are working diligently to ensure continued learning, in some form, is provided to our students.

In the short time MVROP has been operating in this new learning landscape, we have seen our staff unite, in supporting each other and collaborating with creative ways to instruct students remotely. We will continue to do everything we can knowing “Alone, we can do so little; together, we can do so much,” said best by Helen Keller. These words have never rung more true as we face this global pandemic together, comply with the resulting extreme mitigation tactics necessary to slow its progress, and its unfortunate effect it has on not only education, but also our daily lives. It remains important for each of us to do our part.

MVROP advises the MVROP community to continue to adhere to the “Shelter in Place” Orders by:

  • Only leaving your home for essential purposes
  • Practicing social distancing (six feet separation)
  • Washing hands with soap and water frequently
  • Avoiding touching your face, eyes and mouth
  • Engaging in regular physical exercise and/or physical activity
  • Staying home if not feeling well (contacting your health care provider if exhibiting symptoms)

MVROP encourages everyone to remain positive, continue to take care and be well as we navigate these unprecedented times.

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 

ACOE Suspension of In-Class Instruction Extension Though May 1, 2020 Press Release    

 


 

March 18, 2020

 

Dear MVROP Community, 

This morning thousands of school administrators joined a webinar led by Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond, seeking more details about the guidance the state has issued to manage the unprecedented closure of almost every school in California. Some 7000 administrators and others participated in the webinar.  

MVROP and our JPA Districts are continuing to strategize best practices for equitable access to resources for distance learning. MVROP recommends families who do currently do not have Internet access to contact Comcast regarding their Internet Essentials program that provides two free months of Internet services to low-income families. 

We know for certain distance learning and suspension of in-class instruction is the current model that will be maintained through April 7. While there are no definitive answers to date, there is a strong possibility this model would be extended for an undisclosed amount of time. What we will focus on is "the now" in this landscape. We will continue to strengthen our distance learning models, our talented staff are receiving helpful new resources being shared by fellow educational entities, and we have faith that we are doing everything we can at the current time. 

To aid our partner JPA Districts (Fremont, Newark, and New Haven) in disseminating critical food service information to students, please visit the following links to learn the locations of 

Fremont Unified School District (FUSD) and partners are providing to-go lunches at several locations

Newark Unified School District (NUSD) is providing meals from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. daily at two locations 

New Haven Unified School District (NHUSD) is providing breakfasts and lunches for all students from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Mondays (meals for two days) and Wednesdays (meals for three days) at these locations

Additional community food resources also include: 

Alameda County Food Bank (Hours of operation: Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
Residents can find information about food distributions near them by calling 1-510-635-3663 or visiting http://foodnow.net

MVROP encourages everyone to take care of each other and do their best to adapt to this new normal.

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 


 

March 16, 2020

 

Dear Mission Valley ROP Community,

This afternoon six Bay Area counties, and the City of Berkeley, announced they are implementing shelter-in-place orders effective at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, March 17. These major changes to normal daily societal activity are being implemented to prevent the easily transmitted nature of COVID-19, to help reduce group environments, and to protect the populations most vulnerable to this global pandemic novel virus.

Directly following this news announcement, the previously scheduled Emergency Meeting of the MVROP Governing Council approved a resolution permitting suspension of in-class instruction. The MVROP Center Campus and its site programs will be closed March 17 through April 7, 2020. During this time, no staff, students, or the public will have access to the campus. All three JPA District partners (Fremont, Newark, and New Haven School Districts) began their planned closures scheduled for today. 

MVROP, along with all Alameda County Superintendents, the Alameda County Office of Education (ACOE) and the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) will continue to coordinate plans for continued instruction scenarios to minimize the disruption of educational and key services/resources to their communities. We recognize the toll this crisis is having on our organization, staff, students, our resources and our ability to balance the short with the long term. We are all doing our best in this public health crisis.

Through April 7th MVROP will be implementing a distance learning approach to instruction in order to maintain continuity of educational services for our students. Teachers will be communicating with students in remote learning environments, applying CTE-centered lessons during the suspension of in-class instruction. MVROP will announce any changes to this new instruction service strategy should they occur. Community members who do not currently have access to the Internet should contact Comcast regarding its “Internet Essentials” program, which provides two free months of Internet service to low-income families.

To remain up to date with the newest information regarding COVID-19 and to combat the highly transmitted nature of this novel virus, please continue to visit the ACPHD website and the CDC website.

The nature of this virus has forced our schools, many businesses, and community as a whole to adjust and make dramatic changes that are concerning and bring up many questions.  As we learn more information, we will be in communication with the community. MVROP encourages everyone to take care of each other. We will endure this public health crisis together and will surely come out of it stronger than ever.

 

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 


 

March 13, 2020

 

Dear Mission Valley ROP Community,

As you are well aware, the COVID-19 landscape is continuously evolving as more positive cases are being confirmed. To date, seven positive cases have been confirmed in Alameda County. It is important to note, as of today, no positive cases are located in Fremont, Newark, or Union City.

Today MVROP participated in another collective call with all Alameda County Superintendents, the Alameda County Office of Education (ACOE) and the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) to discuss and plan for varying levels of COVID-19 mitigation, preventative practices, and scenarios involving school closures.

While there has been no direct order from ACPHD or the CDC to date for school closures in Alameda County, there are some districts that have chosen to suspend classroom instruction and instead implement distance learning models in order to promote social distancing and mitigation. MVROP serves three separate partner districts with CTE programming and will continue to remain in communication to appropriately adjust to their plans as we continue to receive up to date information.  New Haven USD has announced it will suspend in-classroom instruction effective Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 27, with regular classes resuming on Monday, April 6. Our two other partner districts have scheduled Board of Education meetings in an emergency capacity to empower Superintendents to make hard decisions and any necessary actions due to the time-sensitive nature of the escalating COVID-19 novel virus for this evening.

MVROP plans to conduct in-class instruction on the ROP Main Center Campus on Monday, March 16. Students who are participating in internships should report to their sites for their normal schedule unless said schedule has been augmented or they have been notified otherwise by MVROP. 

Public medical health professionals who are experts in protecting the community still request MVROP to communicate the importance and overall effectiveness of preventative measures in the following forms to combat against the COVID-19 virus: thorough and regular hand-washing procedures, coughing into a tissue/ your arm, and if sick, please stay home. Symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to cold and flu. If you are experiencing symptoms, stay home and contact your healthcare provider. The information being shared by health care providers is stressing that although children can become infected with COVID-19 that their symptoms are less severe than the elderly population. 

We are doing our best to ensure we do our due diligence to provide continuity of services and learning for the Tri-Cities while navigating ongoing circumstances that are rapidly changing. We will continue to provide updated information to the community as quickly as possible.

 

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 


 

March 12, 2020

 

Dear Mission Valley ROP Community, 

MVROP continues to place the well-being of our students, staff, and MVROP community as the first priority as daily updates regarding COVID-19 are reported. As an ongoing effort to maintain regular communication with our community, MVROP would like to share the most current information regarding COVID-19.

On March 11, MVROP participated in a collective call with all Alameda County Superintendents, the Alameda County Office of Education (ACOE) and the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) to learn the most current information about COVID-19 trends, best preventative practices, and health guidelines for the next 30 days.

As MVROP and many other local school districts collectively monitor reported information about COVID-19, we are faced with a unique and challenging scenario. Due to the anticipated increase in positive reported cases over the next few weeks, the ACPHD has advised a series of preventative guidelines be adopted for the next 30 days. These guidelines, while disruptive to the normal functions of CTE programming and community engagement, are necessary to create social distancing and preventative transmission efforts, which can help decrease the number of exposure cases and the overall life cycle of this global pandemic virus. 

Additionally, the CDC has announced that the country has entered a “mitigation” phase focused more on advising people to stay at home if they are sick, canceling public gatherings, and practicing excellent hygiene. In concert with these advisories, MVROP is effectively canceling all field trips, large gatherings, and non-essential meetings. Medium and smaller gatherings will be evaluated individually based on the type of activity, location, and the ability for social distancing. MVROP is also canceling any facility rentals from outside groups and organizations for the next 30 days. While there are no plans for a school closure at this time, MVROP continues to develop varying action plans if a positive case is identified among its staff or student population on site. To clarify, a positive case is defined as a student or staff member who exhibits symptoms and is confirmed as testing positive for COVID-19. This does not pertain to third party exposures to positive cases.

MVROP encourages the strongest preventative measures in the following form to combat against the COVID-19 virus: thorough and regular hand-washing procedures, coughing into a tissue/ your arm, and if sick, please stay home. Symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to cold and flu. If you are experiencing symptoms, stay home and contact your healthcare provider.

We appreciate the cooperation and concern about the well-being of our staff, students, and MVROP community as we continue to navigate the ongoing COVID-19 developments.

 

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 

 


 

March 5, 2020

 

Dear Mission Valley ROP Community,

 

Over the last few weeks the subject of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) has continued to become a dominant topic in the media and in everyday discussions as more positive cases are identified worldwide and in the Bay Area. To date, there have been two reported cases in Alameda County. The first case consisted of a health worker who came into contact with the recent Solano County patient and the other case was identified in Berkeley where the individual came into contact with the virus while recently traveling. There have been no COVID-19 cases identified in Fremont, Newark, or Union City.

 

MVROP understands the growing concerns and anxiety centered around this current climate and takes the health and well-being of our students, staff, and MVROP community very seriously. We continue to be in communication with the Alameda County Office of Education and the Alameda County Public Health Department to ensure we have the latest information and can communicate this with our community. Local school districts are also in collective communication as we are all aware students and families have ties throughout the Bay Area.

 

MVROP and many other local school districts have received inquiries about possible school closures. During this time the ACPHD and Alameda County Superintendents are actively discussing contingency plans and will continue to be in communication with the community should that become a reality. There are no current plans for school closures.

 

MVROP continues to follow the guidance of the CDC and ACPHD and their recommendation of not utilizing face masks for general prevention.  Additionally, in light of the MVROP Main Center Campus being a unique community hands-on learning environment serving students from the Fremont, Newark, and New Haven Unified School Districts, it has implemented regular hand-washing procedures for students as they arrive at the campus from their home schools. Hand sanitizer is available throughout the campus and custodial staff continues to disinfect common areas. As with any flu season, if a child is sick, we ask that parents/ guardians please keep them home from school.

 

We continue to be encouraged by the cooperation and support of our staff, students, and MVROP community as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 landscape.

 

Sincerely,

 

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 

 

Below are some helpful resources for information regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus):

 

California Department of Public Health – COVID-19 Facts

Centers for Disease Control (CDC) - Guidance for Schools

Centers for Disease Control (CDC) – Handwashing Guidelines

 

___________________________________________

 

March 2, 2020

Dear Mission Valley ROP Community,

 

Mission Valley ROP (MVROP) would like to share the latest information about COVID-19 (coronavirus).

MVROP is closely monitoring continuous information being shared by the Alameda County Office of Education, the Alameda County Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on best practices to prevent infection and flu during the current climate.  MVROP will continue to share this information as it is available to ensure the health and wellbeing of our students and staff.  

It is important to remember that handling the spread of a serious contagion like the coronavirus is primarily a task for public health agencies. To date, there is one confirmed case of COVID-19 Alameda County.

Please remember, Coronavirus is in a family of viruses that can cause the common cold, and the usual precautions and prevention measures for cold and flu should be taken. In order to prevent the spread of any illness, if your child is sick, please keep them home from school. Additionally, to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including the coronavirus and flu, it is recommended to follow these important tips: 

  • Washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Getting a flu vaccination  (i.e., a "flu shot")
  • Covering your nose and/or mouth with your arm or a tissue when you sneeze or cough, then throw away the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces routinely
  • Avoid touching your face, particularly your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Keeping your children at home when they are ill, especially if they have a fever
  • Avoiding close contact with others who are ill.
  • Individuals with chronic health issues and/or individuals experiencing severe symptoms should be evaluated by a medical professional.

The ACDPH does not recommend the use of face masks for general prevention. They instead advise frequent handwashing as a more effective source of protection from infectious diseases. While the global spread of this virus has evolved rapidly, it is important to remember the CDC considers California to be a “low risk” area.

We understand this news can be concerning and encourage community members to view additional resources for information on best practices:

California Department of Public Health

World Health Organization (WHO)

We appreciate your cooperation and support.

Sincerely,

  

Thomas Hanson

Superintendent

Mission Valley ROP

 

 

 

 

 See additional communication here:

Alameda County Public Health Department Communication:  

ACPHD Letter Re: Coronavirus (English)

ACPHD Letter Re: Coronavirus (Spanish)