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3/11/20 COVID-10 Update / MDHHS Guidance

First and foremost, the CDC and MDHHS continue to recommend that everyone practice basic prevention, the same precautions encouraged to prevent spread of the flu or common cold, which include:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are unavailable.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid handshakes.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue (or your sleeve) when coughing.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick, and contact your health provider.
Within Northville Public Schools, we have implemented additional cleaning protocols with GRBS (our custodial services provider), including more frequent daily cleaning of touchpoints (i.e. doorknobs, railings, frequently touched surfaces); making adjustments in schedules where possible to provide time for handwashing; and increasing access to hand sanitizer. Durham Transportation Services has added a daily cleaning and disinfecting regimen on every school bus.
At this point in time, we are not being advised to close schools. Any decision to implement a school closure in anticipation of — or in response to — community spread of COVID-19 would be made under the direction of public health agencies and/or the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services. We have not received that direction at this time. We are, however, planning for ways in which we can support students and families to minimize disruption to the learning process in the event of school closures. If the MDHHS advises that the Northville Public Schools close one or more buildings, we will notify families using our usual channels for emergency announcements, including: emails, automated phone calls, texts, social media, and local television media. Please make sure that your child's school has your updated contact information and that you are following the district's social media so that you are receiving all school communications.
While we are not cancelling school at this point in time, please know that, as always, parents are encouraged to make decisions based on what you feel is most appropriate for your student and family, particularly in any situation in which you feel your child and/or a family member may be at risk. Please be assured that we are reviewing attendance procedures to address individual circumstances as necessary. Please be sure to communicate absences to your child’s school, along with noting any extenuating circumstances.
The Governor has recommended that schools, businesses and communities consider canceling or postponing all non-essential events/gatherings of more than 100 people in a shared space. In keeping with this recommendation, we are in the process of cancelling and/or postponing the after-school events/activities that meet this criteria through Spring Break, with more information to follow tomorrow.
We are also in the process of cancelling or postponing all school-sponsored out-of-state or out-of-country field trips scheduled over the coming months, along with evaluating other scheduled activities/events that may be impacted by efforts to mitigate spread of the virus.
For additional information, along with the most up-to-date information, please refer to the following websites:
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services:
Centers for Disease Control:
Please also find attached a resource for talking to children about COVID-19, provided by the National Association of School Psychologists and National Association of School Nurses, that you may find helpful.
We will remain vigilant in monitoring the ongoing guidance provided by our health officials, and in sharing timely and accurate information to the extent possible. We are developing a “Frequently Asked Questions” document that will be shared this week, with additional guidance/ clarification of setting aside attendance policies, resources available to support families, and address specific questions students, families or staff members may have.
As always, we value our strong community partnership as we work together with our students, staff, families and community to promote the safety, health and well-being of all.