Greetings Mount Vernon City School Families,
The Mount Vernon Board of Education and Administration remain steadfast in our efforts to ensure students receive daily in-class instruction in a safe and responsible manner.
The district continues to closely monitor COVID positive cases within our community and school settings. Additionally, the district has maintained open communications with Knox Community Hospital, Knox Public Health, local physicians, pediatricians, and district staff. Working together, we have developed a number of key indicators and considerations that will help guide us as we move forward.
- Community transmission rates in Knox County continue to remain ‘High’ according to data provided through Knox Public Health and the CDC Data Tracker. We believe it is important to see community transmission rates reduced from its current ‘High’ level to a ‘Moderate’ level.
- School transmission rates in Mount Vernon City Schools have continued to decline. Unfortunately, the six week average still finds the district with 30 new cases per week. With that as a baseline, we would like to see those weekly numbers reduced by 50%.
- Current Quarantine guidelines provide significant challenges should we transition to a ‘Mask Optional’ environment. We continue to strongly advocate for a number of quarantine alternatives that are currently pending state approval.
- Additional considerations that have been discussed with health care professionals and medical physicians include: Projected COVID trends, hospital capacity concerns, vaccinations, and masking recommendations to name a few.
While It is the desire of the Board and Administration to transition to a ‘Mask Optional’ environment as soon as possible, we also believe we need to make those decisions utilizing data, the expertise of our health/medical community, and conditions that allow the district to perform the daily operations necessary to educate with all students present.
Keeping our students safe, healthy, and learning in school remains our paramount priority. Our district will continue to monitor the key indicators and considerations listed above to assist in making future masking decisions. Until the majority of the indicators are more favorable, the district will continue to require masks during the school day.
Respectfully Submitted – William Seder Jr.