Covid-19 Update

Hamilton Community,

This past month has been an unprecedented challenge for all of us. As difficult as it has been to see our normal lives put on pause, we are incredibly proud of our CPS family and how you have moved to protect the health of our city. Today, Governor Pritzker announced that the state-wide mandated school closures will be extended through April 30.

As hard as this is, it is what we need to do in order to keep our city safe, and we promise that we are working diligently to support our students, families, and staff members through these closures. 

Important Reminders

Healthy meals are available to our students.
Since our schools closed, over 2.1 million free grab-and-go meals have been provided to CPS families. Families can continue to pick up grab-and-go meals at their neighborhood CPS school from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Remote learning will begin on April 13, 2020.
Earlier this week, we announced our Pre-K–12 remote learning plan to keep our students engaged, learning, and connected to their school community during the closure. 

  • Remote learning assignments and activities will only improve student grades. Our aim is to increase learning, not to negatively impact our students during school closures. 

  • The district will be distributing more than 100,000 devices to help narrow the digital divide during this period. 

  • Please visit cps.edu/remotelearning to learn more. 

You can take crucial actions every day to help protect yourself and your community. 

If you need help locating medical care, please reach out to the CPS Office of Student Health and Wellness at oshw@cps.edu or by calling the CPS Command Center at 773-553-KIDS (5437).

We will get through this together. 

Sincerely, 

Janice K. Jackson, EdD LaTanya D. McDade

Chief Executive Officer Chief Education Officer

Chicago Public Schools Chicago Public Schools  

General principles for talking to children
  • Remain calm and reassuring.
  • Remember that children will react to both what you say and how you say it. They will pick up cues from the conversations you have with them and with others.
  • Make yourself available to listen and to talk.
  • Make time to talk. Be sure children know they can come to you when they have questions.
  • Avoid language that might blame others and lead to stigma.
  • Remember that viruses can make anyone sick, regardless of a person’s race or ethnicity. Avoid making assumptions about who might have COVID-19.
  • Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio, or online.
  • Consider reducing the amount of screen time focused on COVID-19. Too much information on one topic can lead to anxiety.
  • Provide information that is honest and accurate.
  • Give children information that is truthful and appropriate for the age and developmental level of the child.
  • Talk to children about how some stories on COVID-19 on the Internet and social media may be based on rumors and inaccurate information.
  • Teach children everyday actions to reduce the spread of germs.
  • Remind children to stay away from people who are coughing or sneezing or sick.
  • Remind them to cough or sneeze into a tissue or their elbow, then throw the tissue into the trash.
  • Discuss any new actions that may be taken at school to help protect children and school staff. (e.g., increased handwashing, cancellation of events or activities)
  • Get children into a handwashing habit.
  • Teach them to wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing their nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  •  If soap and water are not available, teach them to use hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer should contain at least 60% alcohol. Supervise young children when they use hand sanitizer to prevent swallowing alcohol, especially in schools and childcare facilities.
 
Facts about COVID-19 for discussions with children
  • Try to keep information simple and remind them that health and school officials are working hard to keep everyone safe and healthy.
  • What is COVID-19?
  • COVID-19 is the short name for “coronavirus disease 2019.” It is a new virus. Doctors and scientists are still learning about it.
  • Recently, this virus has made a lot of people sick. Scientists and doctors think that most people will be ok, especially kids, but some people might get pretty sick. Doctors and health experts are working hard to help people stay healthy.
  • What can I do so that I don’t get COVID-19?
  • You can practice healthy habits at home, school, and play to help protect against the spread of COVID-19:
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue or your elbow. If you sneeze or cough into a tissue, throw it in the trash right away.
  • Keep your hands out of your mouth, nose, and eyes. This will help keep germs out of your body.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Follow these five steps—wet, lather (make bubbles), scrub (rub together), rinse and dry. You can sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice.
  • If you don’t have soap and water, have an adult help you use a special hand cleaner.
  • Keep things clean. Older children can help adults at home and school clean the things we touch the most, like desks, doorknobs, light switches, and remote controls. (Note for adults: you can find more information about cleaning and disinfecting on CDC’s website.)
  •  If you feel sick, stay home. Just like you don’t want to get other people’s germs in your body, other people don’t want to get your germs either.
  •  
  • What happens if you get sick with COVID-19?
  •  COVID-19 can look different in different people. For many people, being sick with COVID-19 would be a little bit like having the flu. People can get a fever, cough, or have a hard time taking deep breaths. Most people who have gotten COVID-19 have not gotten very sick. Only a small group of people who get it have had more serious problems. From what doctors have seen so far, most children don’t seem to get very sick. While a lot of adults get sick, most adults get better.
  •  If you do get sick, it doesn’t mean you have COVID-19. People can get sick from all kinds of germs. What’s important to remember is that if you do get sick, the adults at home and school will help get you any help that you need.
  •  If you suspect your child may have COVID-19, call the healthcare facility to let them know before you bring your child in to see them.
 
Some other online resources that you might find helpful:
 
Child Mind Institute
 
Share My Lesson
 
National Association of School Psychologists
 
SAMHSA
 
 
I appreciate that everyone is making the best decision for their family right now and I hope we can all continue to support one another. Please email me with any questions.
 
Sincerely,
 
Dr. Vondra, Principal