ESUSD Superintendent's Message Sept. 24, 2021

September 24, 2021

 

Dear ESUSD Families, Employees and Community,

 

I hope the new school year has been off to a great start for all of you. I wanted to take a moment to update you on a few important items for our District.

 

El Segundo High School WASC Visitation

El Segundo High School hosted a virtual Visiting Committee from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) this week. WASC is the accrediting commission for schools and not-for-profit supplementary education programs. In preparation for the visit, the administration and Leadership Team prepared a comprehensive self-study, and I commend Dr. Melissa Gooden, Ms. Sarah Davlantis, Robin Espinoza and the entire faculty for participating actively in the ongoing cycle of improvement. The self-study serves as evidence of the collective contribution of all participants to examine the instructional program and analyze student data for the express purpose of developing meaningful goals that will positively impact student learning moving forward. ESHS received accolades regarding specific areas of strength as well as recommendations for purposeful next steps.  The best outcome a school can hope for is a full six-year accreditation with a one-day mid-term visit.  We look forward to hearing the outcome of the visit in the next month or two.

 

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health Order

Presently, California has the lowest level of COVID-19 in the nation. The overall metrics for COVID-19 have improved in Los Angeles County schools. In a call with Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH) this week, a representative indicated that school transmission was very low and the education sector was doing an excellent job. On September 17, 2021, the LADPH was updated. The most recent update more closely aligns with the California Department of Public Health and allows school districts to shift to modified quarantine when specific criteria are met. LADPH was comfortable making this recommendation as COVID-19 cases in schools have declined by 30%. This week ESUSD began utilizing modified quarantine on a case-by-case basis when the required circumstances are met. You may review the health order here.

 

Important Requirement Regarding COVID-19 Documentation

On August 11, 2021, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued an order requiring all schools serving TK through 12th grades to verify the vaccine status of all staff and volunteers. Beginning October 15th, those who are unvaccinated must undergo at least weekly diagnostic screening testing. 

This order also applies to any workers entering sites including service providers, contractors, consultants or select volunteers who come on campus and interact with students or staff.  The District has followed up with any agency who provides services on ESUSD campuses, as those persons are subject to the vaccination/testing requirement. The details of the CDPH Order can be found here.

 

Background on the El Segundo Middle School Gymnasium Project

The ESMS gymnasium was recognized as a need and incorporated in the Long-Range Facility Master Plan in 2016. The ESUSD Board reached consensus on the final location in November 2019 and that decision was memorialized through formal Board action taken on April 27, 2021, at a duly noticed and regularly scheduled public Board meeting. Theprimary consideration regarding the placement of the gymnasium to align with the other buildings is student safety. The gymnasium location has not changed since it was approved. 

 

The construction plans are completed and await final approval by the Division of State Architects.  The District is moving forward to implement this gymnasium, and we remain committed to completing it with plans to break ground this Fall.  Our students need and deserve this facility, and its location best meets safety and site concerns.  We invite the community to learn the facts and history regarding the gymnasium project on the District website and can be found here.  

 

With Gratitude,

 

Melissa Moore

Melissa Moore

Superintendent

El Segundo Unified School District

 

 

9/24/21