Religious School Covid Protocols

Shir Hadash is working hard to make plans for a return to in-person religious school this Fall. The School Re-Entry Committee will not make final decisions on what school will look like before consulting updated guidance for schools from national & local health departments as well as guidance from the Illinois State Board of Education. It is also very important to the committee that we take into consideration feedback from school families. Until final guidance has been disseminated, we want to share a general outline based on planning to date. We anticipate that:

  • Students will meet in grade-based classroom cohorts similar to past years, with social distancing and PPE in place (exact details will be in line with guidance existing at that time).  Classroom cohorts will not mix or move freely throughout the building.

  • A virtual option will be available to those who are not ready for their students to return to the classroom. In order to provide the same robust curriculum virtually, this may mean that those students will be in a mixed-age virtual classroom or Zooming into a live classroom with a Madrich/Madricha acting as their aide. Families who elect a virtual option may be asked to continue learning in that format until classes resume after the end of the 2021 calendar year.

  • No other events or programming will be scheduled within the building during religious school hours, to minimize the number of people potentially interacting with students and staff.

  • In June, the Board approved a resolution requiring all onsite staff, teachers and Madrichimot to be fully vaccinated for the 2021-2022 school year.

  • With High Holidays starting very early this year, religious school will start on October 3, 2021.

  • The school day will run from 9:45 - 12:15.  While an age appropriate motor break will be included during the school day, movement between classrooms and snack will not be happening this year. This will allow us to have a shorter school day.

  • Please mark your calendars for Monday, August 23rd at 7:30 pm. Will will be hosting a Virtual Parent Town Hall to explain changes and precautions that are being put in place for this school year. There will also be time set aside to listen to your feedback and answer any questions you may have before a final plan is put in place ahead of the October 3 start of school. 

Please feel free to contact me with any COVID-related school concerns or Alan Bernover with any general school questions.  We are very excited to be able to offer in-person programming during the summer and into next school year!

Jen Bernover
Chair, School Re-Entry Committee