COVID Reopening Letter #4 8/26

Dear Bella Mente Parents,

Last night, the Board of Directors had a Special Board Meeting to discuss several options for reopening our school for in-person learning. Based on feedback from our stakeholders, and to protect our staff and students, they decided that our school will continue with distance learning until February 1st. This is a potential starting date for safely reopening in-person learning on our campus.

I know for many families this is probably discouraging because you may have heard of some schools trying to open earlier. I’d like to share why our board made this decision and why I support it completely.

Schools in San Diego County will be able to reopen at the earliest, September 1. However, even some of the county’s larger districts are unsure when they will open. Schools and districts must create reopening plans that include ensuring students can maintain social distance, COVID-19 testing for staff, and back-up plans in case of an outbreak at school or in the community. All of this is very challenging given the ever-changing nature of the virus and upcoming flu season.

With that kind of uncertainty, our board did not feel comfortable risking the safety of its students and staff. Rather, we thought it would be better to take our time, learn from other schools who are reopening, and do it right the first time.

Having a long stretch of distance learning, allows students, families, and staff to plan. Everyone can have a sense of security knowing this is how we will be until at least February 1st. That routine will also be good for academics in that students will not be disrupted with a new schedule.

Finally, and most importantly, many schools and districts are taking the long, thought-out approach in order to ensure our students and staff are safe. I know it seems like forever, but this virus is relatively new, and we don’t know the safest way to approach it. What we have seen is that it has returned in other states and countries when they reopen too fast, including their schools.

I want to thank our board for taking a deliberate approach focused on the health and wellbeing of our community. And, I want to thank you, our families, for your patience. I know this has not been easy but we are in this together. We will continue to update you on our reopening decision-making. 

If circumstances change between now and then that makes a safe decision clearer before this date, we will let you know. Please key an eye out for updates as they become available.

Thank you again,

Erin Feeley, Executive Director