Area school districts close due to coronavirus
All five of the region’s school districts will be closed through at least late in the month in response to the coronavirus.
Over the weekend officials with the Greenville Consolidated School, RSU 68 and Foxcroft Academy of Dover-Foxcroft, the Guilford-based SAD 4 and SAD 41 of Milo all made the decision to close district schools through Monday, March 30 to help reduce potential exposure to the coronavirus. The Dexter-based SAD 46/AOS 94 was closed on Monday, March 16. That evening the school board met and opted to cancel classes until further notice.
Officials with each district will evaluate conditions in local communities, the state and beyond as the days unfold and to keep students, parents and the community informed via the respective district websites and social media platforms. The various platforms also — when applicable — include information on remote learning, school meals, resources for parents and more.
A post on the AOS 94 website (the school unit includes the Harmony School Department and Athens Community School District in addition to SAD 46) the day after the school board meeting said, “At this point SAD 46 will be cancelling school until further notice. Parents/guardians/families should make alternate child care plans as a long-term school closure becomes more likely. More updates will follow as decisions are made. Thank you for understanding in these very tumultuous times.”
On Sunday, March 15 Greenville Superintendent Jim Chasse posted on the Greenville Lakers Facebook page, “In response to the coronavirus emergency, we have made the decision to close school for the next two weeks. There will be no school until March 30, at which point we will re-evaluate.
“There will be no remote or online learning delivered at this time. We will keep you posted if this becomes part of our educational plan.
“In this uncertain time, we feel it’s important that parents not have to worry about their children’s nutrition, so we are making breakfast and lunch meals available for all children 18 years old and under. Meals will be served as a pick-up each day in the back parking lot between 9:30 and 10:30 a.m.”
Chasse wrote a link to the Greenville closure lunch program, to allow any family to order lunch and breakfast by the week, is available at golakers.org or by leaving a message at 207-695-3708 ext. 1. He asked callers provide their name and the number of meals needed.
“Please follow the CDC recommendations of hand washing and social distancing,” he wrote. “Let’s protect our community, especially those who are most vulnerable. The school will continue to stay in touch with you during this challenging and rapidly evolving time.”
“RSU 68 has been continually monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic,” RSU 68 Superintendent Stacy Shorey wrote in a March 15 letter to parents posted at sedomocha.org. “There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 within any of the RSU 68 schools; however, in an effort to be proactive in protecting the health and safety of our community, SeDoMoCha will be closed Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 27. Please note that all evening events scheduled through April break have been cancelled as well. This decision was made in consultation with many and out of an abundance of caution to follow the rapidly changing guidance regarding enhancing social distancing efforts to flatten the curve. This decision has not been made lightly and we certainly care about our families and students and understand the significant burden this will cause families in the coming days.”
“I have also included an article called ‘Social Distancing: This is not a Snow Day’ that talks about the importance of social distancing and flattening the curve and explains why we decided to close school,” she wrote. “Please know that we will be here and continue to communicate with you during this very difficult time. Our students and their families’ health and well-being are what is most important here at SeDoMoCha. I am so proud that we have an opportunity to show our children how together we can problem solve a significant community issue.”
“Foxcroft Academy will be closed beginning tomorrow until March 27, 2020 to support social distancing in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Foxcroft Academy Head of School Arnold Shorey wrote in a Sunday post on the school’s social media platforms. “Students are asked to check their student emails for instructions from their teachers as online learning will be starting (March 16). More information for parents and students will be updated on the Foxcroft Academy web page.”
“We are in historic times and just like any crisis in our history, it will take teamwork to overcome our challenges,” Shorey wrote in another Sunday post. “Please work with your teachers. We have the equipment, tools and expertise to have a very successful online program. Some of you may even enjoy learning online.”
SAD 4 had a half day of school on Monday before closure.