PCS Superintendent Coronavirus
September 11, 2020
Good evening. Please take a moment to recognize Patriot Day. Read the President's proclamation for Patriot Day at https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-patriot-day-2020/. Let’s remember and honor the individuals that displayed many heroic actions on September 11, 2001.
On Wednesday, September 9, 2020, Governor Ricketts announced that all Nebraska counties, except Lancaster, will be moving to a Phase 4 directed health measure (DHM). Phase 4 eases restrictions and primarily provides guidance relative to COVID-19.
However, Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) Commissioner Dr. Matt Blomstedt advised schools to continue with current COVID-19 health protocols that have been deemed effective in the first few weeks of the school year. Specifically, Dr. Blomstedt stated, “I sometimes hear from certain areas of the state, ‘Oh, it’s going really well, can we loosen up restrictions?’ No. This is not the time to be doing that.” Go to https://bit.ly/3iqRtmW and read the full Omaha World-Herald article. The Sarpy/Cass Health Department (SCHD) provided similar guidance to area school leaders.
Additionally, the SCHD COVID-19 risk dial remains at the yellow (moderate risk) level, while the Douglas County Health Department (DCHD) risk dial is at the orange (high risk) level. I believe this is worthy of consideration because we have many Plattsmouth residents that work, shop, attend church services, or engage in other activities in Sarpy and Douglas Counties. In Plattsmouth, we also had two new positive student cases of COVID-19 in our school district this week.
Consequently, I believe it is important to remain vigilant with our protocols, so our students can remain in school and continue to participate in activities. We are not out of the woods yet. Let’s keep a good thing going in our school district and our community. Do it for our kids.
I am pleased to inform you that we are in the process of purchasing and installing Reme Halo air purifiers in our buildings. We are doing this to enhance our safe and healthy learning environment for our students, staff members, and anyone that visits our buildings. It appears that it will be several weeks before we will receive them. We plan to install them as soon as possible for improved safety at PCS. Learn more about Reme Halo at https://www.rgf.com/products/air/reme-halo.
September 11, 2020 Update-High school activities director Mr. Keith Maly, high school principal Todd Halvorsen, and I had a great conversation with students Alicia Oswalt and Jacob Zitek about the possibility of seniors attending home football games. After careful consideration of our current COVID-19 situation and the information provided by our students, we plan to allow senior students to attend only home football games, starting with Homecoming on Friday, September 18, 2020. Students will have a designated seating area on the home side of the football field. Visiting fans will remain on the east side of the field. This will be a pilot to see how it goes at our home football games. We were impressed by Alicia and Jacob’s attentiveness to the importance of our COVID-19 protocols. We plan to update the activities guidelines early next week to reflect this change.
Mr. Halvorsen and I also met with the student advisory board (high school student council officers) to discuss Devilmania. Student council sponsor Megan Poppen will be distributing information to students regarding a modified Devilmania.
PCS guidelines for attendance at high school activities are available by clicking HERE. Please know that we reviewed guidelines from many school districts and conferences in and around the Metro Omaha area before finalizing our guidelines. We do not like limiting attendance, but we are making a conscious effort to limit the spread of the virus, so our students can stay in school and continue with activities. We will continue to work in collaboration with the Sarpy/Cass Health Department relative to COVID-19.
I would like to thank our parents/guardians for continuing to share COVID-19 information with us in a timely manner such that we are able to take quick action. Thank you for your ongoing patience and understanding as we continue to navigate this uncertain environment of COVID-19.
Information about COVID-19 test sites is available below.
-Nebraska Medicine at 402-559-0041.
-Bellevue Intermediate Care Nebraska Medicine at 402-559-7800. 6:00 PM start time. Call ahead from a parking stall on the south side by the pharmacy parking area.
-Visit www.testnebraska.com to complete an assessment and sign up for an appointment at a drive-through testing site offered through the State of Nebraska.
-OneWorld Community Health Center, 4920 South 30th St., Omaha, NE. Testing is for OneWorld patients with symptoms. Call 402-734-4110 for an appointment.
-Charles Drew Health Centers, 2915 Grant Street and 5319 North 30th St., Omaha, NE. Call 402-451-3553 for an appointment.
-CVS Minute Clinics. Visit https://www.cvs.com/minuteclinic/covid-19-testing to schedule an appointment. Locations include 14460 West Maple Road, 4840 Dodge Street, and 6901 South 84th St., Omaha, NE.
-University of Nebraska Medical Center at 50th and G, Omaha, NE. Visit https://is.gd/sohatest to schedule an appointment.
Let’s stay on our positive path with the implementation of the protocols. If you see a friend not following the protocols, remind them to wear a mask and maintain 6 feet of physical distance whenever possible, along with regular handwashing. If you are sick, stay home. I believe we can do this together, if we remain diligent with our protocols.
PCS 2020-2021 Return to School Documents
State of Nebraska (Governor Pete Ricketts)
Nebraska Department of Education (Commissioner Dr. Matt Blomstedt)
Sarpy/Cass Health Department (Director Sarah Schram)
Plattsmouth Community Schools (Dr. Richard E. Hasty)
What can we do right now? All of us can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and “flatten the curve.” Click HERE for some tips from the Centers for Disease Control.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, people with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms from mild to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus and include, but are not necessarily limited to, fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Learn more at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html.
If you or someone you know experiences symptoms, please consider contacting a medical provider. Timely reporting of COVID-19 will help ensure those affected are quarantined/isolated and there is a limited spread of the virus.
Another option for screening yourself or those that you know is an app called 1-Check COVID. The app was launched by the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Download it from the app store on your Apple and Android devices. Simply enter “1-Check COVID.”
Thank you for your patience and support of everyone as we navigate the environment of COVID-19. We will get through this together. If we consistently wear masks when around others, maintain 6 ft. of physical distance when possible, wash our hands regularly, and report positive cases of COVID-19 in a timely manner, I am confident that we can collectively slow the spread of the virus. Let’s do this together!
Social/emotional health of students, families, and staff members is extremely important in our COVID-19 environment. If you or someone you know needs assistance, please contact one of our four school social workers/licensed mental health practitioners (SSW/LMHP).
Early Childhood/Head Start: Bri Renninger, email@example.com
Elementary School: Sarah Coniglio, firstname.lastname@example.org
Middle School: Sara Barada, email@example.com
High School: Keryl Mines, firstname.lastname@example.org
Given our COVID-19 environment, I believe it is important to remind everyone about Say Something-Anonymous Reporting System (SS-ARS). In addition to saying something to a trusted adult, the SS-ARS provides other methods (telephone, website, and app) for reporting potentially unsafe situations. Please speak with your children about these ways to report potentially unsafe situations, as we continue to focus on keeping our schools safe for everyone. For more information, please visit https://www.saysomething.net.
In-Person and Remote Learning
As a reminder, if you have concerns with your child attending school in-person, we have the option of remote learning available for you. If you are interested in remote learning, please contact the building principal where your child attends school.
Stay focused on positive things. We will get through this together! We Are Blue Devil Nation! We are #PLATTSMOUTHSTRONG!
Superintendent Dr. Richard E. Hasty
I anticipate that our PCS Fall 2020 Return to School Protocols and the brief overview document will answer many of your questions, but we also developed a frequently asked questions (FAQ) document that is available by clicking HERE. This document will be an ongoing work in progress as we progress into the 2020-2021 school year.
Congratulations to our 2020 Board of Education members and newly elected officers representing Blue Devil Nation!
The Plattsmouth Education Foundation awarded education grants to Kristen Allen, Emma Shaner, Marla Smith, and Becky Stoskopf. Congratulations!
Campus Parent Portal will have a new look beginning July 9th. When you log into your parent portal it will look different. See below for instructions on how to navigate through your new portal. Remember to download the new app. The old app will be removed from the app store soon.
If you still need to register your student, click on the tab For Parents then Infinite Campus. Once you have logged into your portal, select “MORE” from the dropdown menu on the left-hand side of your portal page to access the Online Registration link. Click on “Online Registration” to begin.