Dear Weston Families and Staff,
Happy 2021! With the holiday season slowly fading in our rearview mirror, I would like to take a moment to send a sincere note of gratitude for all you have done and are doing to keep our community safe and our schools open. We have all made tremendous sacrifices over these past months in efforts to do our part. These sacrifices have tested our personal and professional limits and beliefs; however, these sacrifices have also demonstrated our collective resilience. Our community has witnessed tragedy and triumph, hope and doubt, all of which will change us forever. As a nurse, I have seen and felt grief and doubt in more layers than I have ever known, but throughout I have held onto the hope and faith in the collective us.
We have seen our community rally and sacrifice for physical and mental healthcare and educational supports for all. We have witnessed teamwork and collective, goal driven collaboration across fields to make our school community work. I am so grateful to you all for the sacrifices and the hard work, but I ask that as we look back on 2020 and look forward to 2021 that we hold onto the resilience that has never before been so demonstrable as in this past year. Let’s hold onto that.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind you all of the travel requirements. I recognize that this past holiday was particularly tough on all of us, and many traveled for various reasons. We know that any travel has its risks, and for that reason our policy is clear, we ask that you provide proof of a negative Covid-19 PCR/molecular test obtained within 72 hours of return. I have attached the WPS travel guidance here for those who have not yet viewed it. Many of you have done your part, and have reached out to your school nurses to report your travel plans and provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test. To all of you, I extend my sincere gratitude. For those who have yet to return, or have not obtained proof of negative Covid-19 test, please do your part and remain home on quarantine pending proof of a negative test, and reach out to your building nurse and administrator for support. Together we can return to school and start 2021 on the right foot. Together we can continue this positive trend, and keep our schools open.
In addition, I would like to make note of the change to the flu mandate. The state of Massachusetts has delayed the date by which all K-12 students are required to provide proof of influenza vaccination or documentation of a medical or religious exemption to February 28th. Again, so many of you are doing your part and have taken the opportunity during the break to get vaccinated. I applaud you all. For those who have yet to provide proof of vaccination or documented exemption, please reach out to your school nurse within the next week to discuss your plans for vaccination. We are here to support you.
Again, I thank you all for your collective efforts to this point. Together, we can finish this school year on a positive note. One that we collectively write.
Cheers to the new year!
Jamy Gaynor, EdD, MS, RN, NCSN