Dear Archdiocesan School Communities:
As we watch the news each day and receive updates to the status of the spread of COVID-19 across the state, we a re aware that this virus continues to challenge our local communities as well as the State of Georgia.
Our schools were scheduled to reopen their buildings on March 30, 2020 and I write today to inform you that our buildings will remain closed from Monday, March 30 through Friday, April 17; virtual days in our high schools and Home Learning Plans in our grade schools will continue with the exception of Spring Break as noted below. While I hope that our schools will reopen on Monday, April 20, the rapidly evolving and changing nature of the spread of COVID-19 will require that date to be reviewed.
During the time that our schools remain closed, all extra-curricular activities, practices, sports, meetings, school events and field trips remain canceled.
For all but one of our schools, the week of April 6 – April 10 is scheduled for Spring Break. A few schools also included Holy Monday, April 13, as part of the Spring Break. During your Spring Break, high school virtual days as well as grade school Home Learning Plans will be suspended – everyone, students and teachers, deserve to look forward to that time away from their computers; please refer to your local school calendar for the exact dates of your school’s scheduled Spring Break.
We have held weekly teleconferences with our administrators and I want to thank them, and all of our teachers and support staff members, for their dedication, creativity and tireless efforts to implement online learning for our students where students have daily ongoing support and direct communication with their teachers. As administrators, we could not have foreseen this coming; the delivery of quality instruction to our students via online platforms will continue f o r the next several weeks.
I realize the closing of our school buildings places a hardship on families as many parents are working remotely from home as their children continue with online learning. These are unprecedented times in our world and they call for serious action taken on our part in the best interest of public health. In my Fourteen years as the Superintendent of Schools, I would never had predicted closing our schools for such an extended period of time. I thank you for your ongoing patience and cooperation during this difficult time. We greatly appreciate your support as we navigate these uncharted waters together.
Let us be united in our faith and in our determination to return to our ‘normal’ days as soon as possible. Please know that in the interim, I continue to pray for all of you, and all those who have been impacted by COVID-19. In addition, the Archdiocese of Atlanta continues to provide spiritual resources and a list of live-streamed masses throughout the Archdiocese of Atlanta at www.archatl.com
I encourage you to use these resources w ith your families as we strive to continue the mission of the Church and its schools.
Diane Starkovich, Ph.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Let us pray for each other, our school communities, and all those suffering from COVID-19:
May we know we are not alone. God is with us. May we turn to God right now in our time of need. May we bring the suffering of our world-wide community into God’s loving care. May God’s healing and grace shower down upon us, especially those who are sick. May our weak and vulnerable be protected.
May we ask God how we are called to respond, to act, and to move forward. May God make our paths known to us. May we know how to tend to and care for those who are sick and impacted. May we seek shelter and refuge in the arms of the One who loves us and offers us mercy. May all who have experienced loss be comforted.
May we hope in you, O Lord.