12 March 2020
Dear Cathedral School Families:
After consulting with a number of our local K-8 peer schools, we have decided proactively to close Cathedral School from Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 27. (We are already closed tomorrow for a professional development day.) Circumstances may necessitate a longer period, and I will communicate with you as far in advance as circumstances allow to prepare for any additional period of closure. All school activities and events are canceled during this time.
This decision, of course, was made with all due deliberation and consideration. We realize that it will cause hardship for our families. However, the collective thinking is that the immediate needs of our school community and the responsibilities that our institution owes to others necessitate this response. I apologize for the inconvenience that this decision will cause, though I do trust that you understand and support the reasons for it. We believe that this is a critical moment in the outbreak of COVID-19, and collective measures can potentially influence the spread of the virus. We need to do our part.
I will issue a more detailed communication about the logistical and operational implications of school closure on Saturday. There are a few essential items that deserve immediate attention:
- Our distance learning plan will go into effect next Monday, March 16, for Lower School, and next Tuesday, March 17, for Upper School. (Upper School teachers are working hard to complete comments before we close, and the extra day will give them the time to do so.)
- I have previously communicated the highlights of our distance learning plan earlier in the week, and I will attach the complete plan with my letter on Saturday. The Division Directors will also communicate with you on Monday with additional details about the implementation of this plan for each grade.
- The School building will be closed during this time, and students and parents should stay away. If you feel any need to come to campus, please consult the appropriate Division Director.
- We will conduct a deep cleaning of our campus next week and again in anticipation of the students’ return.
- Please use the coming days to prepare your family and your sons to begin distance learning next week.
- The efficacy of closures is dependent upon the willingness of parents to abide by social distancing recommendations. We ask that you restrict your social interactions during this time as much as circumstances allow.
On a final note, I should mention my appreciation for the way our School community has responded to our communication and decisions over these last few weeks. You have continued to display the level of care and support that Cathedral is known for, and that is so essential during times like these.
I suspect that, especially if the closure is a prolonged one, our professional and personal lives will soon grow more complicated. However, I encourage us all to continue to operate with patience, with trust, and with empathy. In typical Cathedral School fashion, let’s try to make the best of these circumstances and teach our sons through our example.
You can expect to hear from me again soon. Thank you for your patience and support.
All the best,