October 29, 2020
Dear Penn Cambria Families,
This morning, Penn Cambria School District convened a special meeting of the Board of Education to discuss the current approved Health and Safety Plan. Click here for the video of the meeting.
The District became aware of our first positive case on Tuesday. The PA Department of Health is actively contact tracing our positive case. We also have several employees and students that are currently in quarantine due to close contact with persons that have tested positive for COVID-19. These quarantines extend anywhere from 14 days up to 24 days depending upon circumstances. Cambria County continues to see a surge in positive cases and our local area is now being significantly impacted by this rise in cases. We are thankful that both our staff and students are following our guidance to stay home when symptomatic. We continue to ask that everyone follow this guidance to keep our schools safe. However, adequate substitute coverage for staff absences is a concern as we have seen an increase in staff absences because of this guidance.
Our elementary buildings grades K-4 have smaller enrollments, classrooms are self-contained, and student and staff contact with others in the building is limited.
However, at both PC Middle School and PC High School, students change classes and when all students are in attendance, the buildings are unable to maintain social distancing expectations during the school day in many cases.
While we share our families concerns about social and educational progress when full face-to-face instruction is not possible, the health and safety of our entire Penn Cambria community remains our priority. We remain committed to doing everything we can to provide at least some opportunity for face-to-face instruction for our students and we feel we are more likely to be able to maintain some face-to-face instruction at this time by remaining in the hybrid model at both PC Middle School and PC High School.
Based on these circumstances, the Board of Directors voted to keep PCMS and PCHS students in the Hybrid Model of learning through December 23, 2020. For the second marking period, student hybrid group days will flip with Group B students generally attending the first two days and Group A students attending the second two days. Due to the holiday disruptions, please see the calendar schedule at the end of this letter. This will also be posted on our website.
A few additional notes are below.
- Remote learning sessions on Wednesdays will continue to be available for MS/HS students based on the weekly sign up form. There will be no remote learning session on Wednesday, November 25th as our faculty and students will be attending synchronous (real-time) sessions online that day.
- Synchronous (real-time) online sessions will be offered for all students grades 5-12 on Wednesday, November 25th as a way to practice synchronous sessions should they be necessary at some point during this year. Directions will be posted in Canvas for accessing each session prior to November 25th.
- Admiral Peary Vocational students will follow their group schedule as noted below for quarter 2.
- PC Cyber Academy families who have already completed paperwork to return to buildings on November 2nd may contact our administrative office at 814-886-8121 or email Mrs. Black directly (BLACKJL@pcam.org) by Tuesday, November 3rd if they wish to remain in the PC Cyber Academy for the second marking period as a result of this change.
- Meal service will continue to be offered as it has during quarter one.
- All parent conferences will be virtual in November. Teachers at PCMS and PCHS will be reaching out to those parents that had signed up for an in-person conference.
Remember to continue to wear your mask, maintain social distance, wash your hands frequently, and stay home when you are not feeling well. Please do everything possible to stay safe and be healthy.
William W. Marshall