Dear Monument Academy Families,

El Paso County Public Health sent a communication to us today to clarify the new state orders and how they apply to schools. In response to recent increases in COVID-19 case rates, test positivity, and hospitalizations, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) notified El Paso County (EPC) that our county will be moving to Level Orange: Safer at Home – High Risk in the state’s dial framework. EPC had until 5:00 p.m. this evening, Friday, November 13, 2020, to fully implement these changes. The impact to schools is that each school and district must evaluate, through these new guidelines, the viability of in-person learning and to make these decisions within the district and school communities.

These last two weeks have seen a great number of precautionary quarantines and three positive cases with staff and students between both MA campuses.  The number of precautionary quarantines has put staff at every level of operations on an at-home work status. This means that remaining staff who are able to be present with our in-person learners have been going above and beyond, as are the teachers who are pivoting to at-home live-stream instruction to ensure that our students are receiving as optimal an education as possible during this challenging time.

As reported at the Board meeting last night, Administration is consistently evaluating our in-school resources to ensure that in-person learning continues safely with the educational values that Monument Academy upholds. The new state orders encourage in-person learning but ask schools and districts to determine for themselves if, given the number of quarantines and positive cases experienced, in-person learning remains viable. Given these considerations, many districts have already switched to distance learning.

Our district remains open and continues to serve in-person learners. Please refer to the communication sent earlier today from district superintendent, Dr. Somers, for more detailed information on this decision. Monument Academy upholds this effort. We believe that the best place for our students to learn is in our schools, and we are committed to providing in-person learning for as long as permitted and viable.

I ask that our community continue to support these efforts by continuing to conduct self-checks each morning and to communicate to us if your child is experiencing any symptoms. MA continues to ensure that our school environments at both campuses are following all protocols to keep any transmissions at bay, and we are grateful to our families continued support in these efforts.

As we enter into Thanksgiving break, we ask that you continue to monitor your family for symptoms and to communicate with us by emailing our school nurse, Chelsea Pierce.

I send to you and your loved ones my best wishes for your continued safety and good health.

Warm regards,

Christianna Herrera

Chief Operating Officer