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UPDATES from LCCS Head of School Mark Earwood:

3/28/2020:
Eagle Families:

I apologize for an email less than 24 hours after my previous update, but information changes rapidly as we battle the spread of COVID-19.  In cooperation with other area schools after consultation with public health officials, LCCS will extend our voluntary shutdown of campus activities and school through April 17th.   At this moment, that means our first day back on campus is scheduled for Monday, April 20th.

In accordance with the shutdown, the LCCS campus is closed to all Non-Essential personnel.  This includes formal and informal practices, gatherings or socialization.  Likewise, all events scheduled on the school calendar through April 20th will be cancelled or rescheduled.

I will keep you informed with as much advanced notice as possible of any extensions of the shutdown.  Our goals remain the same during this time:  to assist in the safety and health of our students, faculty and families AND to progress the students in preparation for the next grade level.

Stay safe and enjoy your family time together.  We will press forward one day at a time.

Blessings and peace,

Mark Earwood, M.Ed., School Administration | Head of School
Lake Country Christian School

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3/27/2020:
Dear Eagle Families:

The City of Fort Worth has extended the Shelter in Place order through Tuesday, April 7th. You can find the full information regarding restrictions and how it impacts you personally at this link Shelter in Place

  • “Shelter In Place” and “Social Distancing” are separate issues, but both impact the ability to conduct school. We will continue to follow State, local and CDC guidelines for navigating the pandemic and deciding on a resumption of school on campus. I’ll do my best to give you as much notice as possible, but the easing of Shelter in Place does not necessarily coincide with a resumption of school on campus. Please check your email for emails with COVID19 Update in the Title. The news changes daily on this and we will do our best to keep you informed.
  • We are adapting on the fly to Distance Learning and attempting to address your needs as we go. I continue to ask for your patience as we press ahead. We understand the extreme pressure this places on parents, especially those with multiple children in the school, and we are attempting to mitigate the problems this situation has caused. We cannot provide the perfect solution for every family dynamic, but we ask for your thoughtful consideration in messages to teachers and on social media as we work together. Our teachers are giving their whole heart and effort during a very trying time for everyone. A key element of Eagle DNA is ENCOURAGEMENT! Please show your Eagle DNA in public and private.
  • While we continue to pray for the Lord to bring a quick end to this for the sake of our school and our Seniors, we simply have to plan for a prolonged disruption. Please help us by responding to the surveys sent out by Dr Williams and Mrs. Deckert. This is the feedback that will help us make the necessary adjustments to our plans to serve you better. Your voice is important.

Through the midst of this mess, I see some beautiful things emerging. I see families hanging out together. I see more people out walking. I see a rallying around our school and a longing for the fellowship we all enjoy in our unique little family. I can’t pretend to see through the eyes of God or know his ultimate plan, but I can say that I believe he is doing his abstract art and making something beautiful emerge from the chaos of the day.

Stay protected and wrapped in his loving arms and know that Laura and I are praying for our school family every day. I’ll keep you as informed as possible without blowing up your inbox.

Blessings and peace,

Mark Earwood, M.Ed., School Administration | Head of School
Lake Country Christian School

___________________________

3/16/2020:
Dear LCCS Families:

The Leadership Team met today with two goals in mind:  1.  safety/health of our school community   2. progressing our students in the curriculum to prepare them for the next grade level.  This week, March 16-20 is a time for the school to prepare for the launch of online learning. There is no expectation of student work to be completed this week.  Here is the order of business this week for the school as we prepare to launch into distance learning on Monday, March 23rd:

  • Today:  Leadership team meets to map out pathway forward and parameters for online learning
  • Tuesday:  Teacher training and setup, including necessary IT hardware and apps.
  • Wednesday:  Teacher training and setup
  • Thursday:  Student Preparation and setup (communication only.  no students on campus)
  • Friday:  Finalization of the plan including setup and prep (a scheduled time for students to access needed supplies will be forwarded by grade level principals)

We want to answer all questions and have the plan ready to roll on Monday, March 23rd, our first official day of distance learning.  This plan will be the same one implemented should the shutdown of on-campus activities continue on past March 30th.  Please be looking for important followup emails from your grade level Principals that will detail all activities and needs.

The CDC has requested that gatherings be limited to less than 50 people for the next 8 weeks.  This would be a Mid-May time frame.  While it does specifically exclude school’s day-to-day operations, it does not include extracurricular events and plans.  For this reason, LCCS is cancelling all events through April 10th including field trips, athletic and fine arts activities and other social gatherings that are not a part of the regular school day.  We will wait to hear from government officials on events after that date before making any further decisions.  If you have already paid the school for one of these events, a refund will be forthcoming through FACTS.

Please remember that the campus remains closed to all outside activity during these next two weeks.  That includes formal and informal gatherings or use of any portion of the facilities.  We also highly discourage informal gatherings off campus to practice or continue in any school-related activity. The goal is to limit exposure to other people and we must do our part in this battle.

As we move forward, it is important to remember that Government officials have the authority to dictate school activities, including closures.  We take our lead from the CDC and the Tarrant County Health Department, but also from the Mayor and County Judge, both of whom have authority in times of crisis to close schools.  We will do our best to keep you apprised of circumstances that could affect the plan we have put forward or prolong the plan for a time longer than originally anticipated.   Obviously it’s a very fluid situation and we must be ready to comply with requests made of us for the public good.

My prayer is that the families of LCCS be like the Children of Israel – that plague and pestilence, disease and hardship die at our doorstep and never hit us.  Even so, let’s all do our part as good citizens to help others in this battle against COVID-19.

Blessings and safety,

Mark Earwood, M.Ed., School Administration | Head of School
Lake Country Christian School

___________________________

3/13/2020:
Dear LCCS Families:

In response to the increasing threat of COVID-19, the Tarrant County Public Health Department has requested that schools stay closed for two additional weeks.  Many public and private schools have announced compliance with this request and LCCS will follow that guidance in doing our part to help curb the spike of this growing health threat. As of today, we anticipate re-opening to students on Monday, March 30.  The campus is closed to all non-essential personnel and visitors, including sports teams and voluntary workouts/sessions that take place on campus.  Since the virus can live on surfaces for unusually long periods of time, keeping the facility free of traffic is an essential step in doing our part in the battle.

This email will in no way answer all of your questions and I ask for your patience and support as we navigate the uncharted waters these extraordinary days are bringing us.

  • My leadership team will be gathering on Monday, March 16 to implement plans toward distance-learning beginning as soon as possible, but hopefully no later than Monday, March 23rd. Those plans will vary greatly by division.  We hope to articulate that plan to you in greater detail on Monday, March 16.
  • This is NOT extended vacation time.  It is an official cancellation of on-campus activities, including classroom instruction.  We need full parental support and cooperation to keep education advancing through these extraordinary times. As we divulge the distance learning plan, we need your full cooperation in keeping the school and your student progressing toward the end of the year.
  • The Health Department has emphasized that students need to stay home. The practice of social distancing is imperative to curbing the spiking cases of COVID-19.  Please do your best to avoid large social gatherings over the course of the next 14 days.

Again, our trust is completely in the Lord, but we also want to be good citizens and comply with those who are doing their best to look out for the public health. We will communicate with you as often as possible throughout these challenging days.

Mark Earwood, M.Ed., School Administration | Head of School
Lake Country Christian School

___________________________

3/12/2020:

The administrative team at LCCS has been monitoring the situation with the Coronavirus (Covid-19) closely and working behind the scenes to be prepared as we can for an uncertain future.  This situation is rapidly changing by the day and we hope to be prepared with multiple contingencies as events unfold. This letter is to officially inform you that LCCS will be extending spring break an additional week to allow more information about corralling the spread of the virus and our vital role in its containment.   More information will be forthcoming as plans are implemented.  

Tarrant County Health Department currently shows one positive case of Coronavirus.  While the Houston area is apparently the hub of the outbreak in our state, we must face the reality that this dynamic virus has an unknown extension throughout our country and the world.  Though it appears that children are somewhat immune from the total effects of the virus, students with compromised immune systems or other health challenges are still at risk as well as adults and especially the elderly.

Spring Break saw many of our families traveling across the country and the world.  This could present an unknown risk of greater exposure, as other countries and areas of the U.S. are experiencing multiple sudden outbreaks.   Any person who has visited a country listed at level 2 or higher are asked to limit outside interactions for at least 14 days.  If you are currently traveling and affected by quarantine or travel restrictions, please contact the grade-level principal.

The following are some things to bear in mind at the time school reconvenes:

1. Remember that the majority of Upper Respiratory Illnesses are currently NOT Covid19.
2. Regardless of travel history, children with cough, fever, shortness of breath need to stay home and contact your pediatrician’s office for further instruction and medical evaluation. If a sibling is sick that is not an LCCS student, please notify the school.   PLEASE, do not medicate and send your child to school if they have a fever (100 degrees or higher).
3. The virus can spread by droplets in the air (estimated 5-6 feet). Please continue to educate proper cough etiquette, which included covering your cough with a disposable tissue or the sleeve of your arm.
4. The virus can also be spread by touching surfaces with those droplets on them and then touching your face, eyes, and nose.
5. Frequent hand washing will be encouraged at school, WASH your hands! · Do NOT touch your face (eyes, nose, and mouth), chew on a pen, or share drinks/food/utensils.

Here are some helpful links for your questions about Covid-19, Coronavirus.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
https://access.tarrantcounty.com/en/public-health.html

Our website at www.lccs.org will keep you up to speed on the latest developments regarding this ever-changing situation.

Finally, remember that our ultimate hope and security is in the Lord.  Just like he had pestilence and disease die at the door of the Children of Israel, we pray he will do the same for the LCCS family who is joined together in his name.

Mark Earwood, M.Ed., School Administration | Head of School
Lake Country Christian School