Dear Staff, Students, and Parents/Guardians,
I am writing to inform you that three individuals in our North Adams Public Schools community have tested positive for COVID-19. These individuals were tested and identified as positive on Thursday, April 15, 2021.
The new cases impact Greylock Elementary School (2) and Drury High School (1). The North Adams Public Schools is also experiencing a high number of teacher absences due to vaccination side effects, and the weather forecast for tomorrow is predicting a spring snowstorm. In an abundance of caution due to these new cases, the impact of teacher absences, and considerations of weather related delays or cancellations, North Adams Public Schools will use an emergency closure day (snow day) for tomorrow, April 16, 2021. This is an emergency day and school is closed, not a remote day. No students or staff are to report to school or online for remote learning. This day will need to be made up in June at the end of the school year, effectively moving the last day of school to June 14, 2021.
Students and staff who have had close contact with the individuals were notified and will begin quarantine effective immediately. Close contact is defined as proximity of less than 6 feet of physical distance for more than fifteen minutes.
Following the spring vacation, on Monday, April 26, 2021, all elementary students and staff can return to school for in-person/remote learning and grades 7-12 students and staff can return to school per the hybrid/remote learning model.
Though we cannot provide specific information about the individuals who tested positive, North Adams Public Schools has implemented our protocols for notification, disinfection, and quarantine for staff and students. Contact tracing has been conducted by School Nurse Leader Lauren Gage and she is assured that there is no possible exposure within the schools due to these cases. We are also following all Department of Health protocols, including collaborating with our local board of health to complete contact tracing. Additionally, we are asking those parents whose students are tested for COVID-19 at their health care provider’s office or at the Stop the Spread Center located at 97 Church Street, North Adams to please report the results to the school nurse.
The district’s ongoing pooled testing program continues to assist us in determining if there is potential of community transmission of COVID-19.
If you would like your student to be tested via our pooled testing program, please complete a consent form. To complete the Pooled Testing Consent Form, go to: https://www.napsk12.org/page/pooledcovid19testing. If you have any questions about the pooled testing program, please email the school nurse leader Lauren Gage at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will continue to be vigilant in adhering to all of the protocols that have been put in place in an effort to continue in-person learning. We are also continuing to provide remote learning for all students required to quarantine at home. We are committed to continuous communication with, and support of, our families. If there is additional transmission as a result of this case or a separate case, we will send out another message immediately. Thank you for your continued support.
Barbara Malkas, Ed.D.
Superintendent of North Adams Public Schools