Dear MA families,

On behalf of Governor Polis and Superintendent Somers, we are forwarding the following:

“Pikes Peak Area Superintendents Support Governor’s Order to Extend School Closures

To help mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Colorado, on Wednesday, March 18, 2020, Colorado Governor Jared Polis ordered all public and private schools across the state suspend in-person learning from March 23rd to April 17th.

The executive order directs Colorado school districts and the Charter School Institute to make every effort to provide alternative learning opportunities during this time while taking into account the needs of local communities. This order also directs the Commissioner of Education to issue guidance to support P-12 school systems in developing and implementing plans to assist families and students in accessing alternative learning, providing free and reduced lunch and breakfast, and offering waivers for instructional time as appropriate.

‘Protecting the health of all Coloradans is our top priority, and moving to online learning and other ways to support learning at home is absolutely the right thing to do,’ said Education Commissioner Katy Anthes. ‘We know school leaders, educators and families will have a lot of questions about how to support their students’ learning at home during this unprecedented time. The department is working on guidance and developing resources to support our schools and students, and it will be available very soon.’

The governor made this order via press release this evening. Read it online here: https://www.colorado.gov/governor/news/colorado-takes-further-action-address-public-health-threat-covid-19.

School districts in the Pikes Peak Region had already decided to close school buildings through March 27th. This order will extend that time frame. At this time, we anticipate students will return to school on Monday, April 20th.

‘We appreciate the Governor’s guidance and leadership during this challenging time. Our local districts are meeting tomorrow and in the coming days and will provide individual communities more specifics after those meetings,’ said Dr. Walt Cooper, superintendent of Cheyenne Mountain School District 12.

Educators and leadership in the Pikes Peak Region have already started working on how to provide educational resources for students and families, and school districts are planning for how to ensure that students can continue to receive breakfast and lunch while schools are closed.

Pikes Peak Area Superintendents emphasize that this is a new reality for all, and it will require all of us working together in support of children in the Pikes Peak Region. We know that this information brings both certainty and uncertainty for the weeks ahead. We’d ask that we allow each other a measure of grace, as we develop plans for what school looks like in the weeks ahead. Now, more than ever, we must work together for the benefit of our children and our community. We thank you for being patient as we navigate this new reality.”

Please know we will continue to keep you updated and informed, and that we are here for any of you if you need us.

MA Leadership Team