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Update from Clarence CSD November 19, 2021

Dear Clarence School Family,

As you know, since the beginning of the year we have been conducting daily temperature screenings at school and asking our staff and parents to complete health questionnaires using the Frontline app. Our records indicate, however, that neither of the interventions have been flagging individuals who are feeling ill.

Given this fact, we will no longer be requiring temperature screenings at school or Frontline app reporting for students, parents, or staff when we come back from Thanksgiving Break on Monday, November 29. Instead, we will trust that members of our school family will continue to stay home if they are displaying COVID symptoms, and that they will follow the return to school guidelines provided by the Department of Health (click here). This change reflects a shift we are seeing in schools across the State, as well as a local commitment to consistently reviewing our health and safety procedures.

Teacher Aides Needed

For years, our talented teacher aides have helped make Clarence one of the best school districts around. From student supervision to supporting classroom instruction, they have been key to helping ensure a safe and nurturing environment for kids. With that in mind, I would like to invite you to explore one of our current teacher aide vacancies. Like most districts in this region, we are currently facing support staff shortages, and we hope you will consider applying for a position that offers summers off, health benefits, great colleagues, and the potential to positively impact the lives of students.

If you are interested in learning more, please click this link to pass along your name and phone number. Once that happens, someone from our District Office will reach out within 1-business day to talk in more detail.

Wall of Fame Nominations

To honor former members of our school community, the High School has established an Academic Hall of Fame. The program is designed to highlight individuals who have achieved distinction through professional, civic, or humanitarian service, and anyone may submit a nomination.

If you know someone who stands out in one of the following categories, I would encourage you to consider nominating them by February 1st. (Click this link.)

  • Excellence in their chosen field
  • Meritorious service to a humanitarian cause
  • Significant contribution to the community

Weekly COVID Report

Each Friday, we will send out a COVID report with weekly data involving positive case counts as well as the number of individuals placed in quarantine by the Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH). Below you will see the report from this past week.

  • 3 individuals at Clarence High School tested positive, 0 quarantined
  • 9 individuals at Clarence Middle School tested positive, 17 quarantined
  • 2 individuals at Clarence Center Elementary School tested positive, 3 quarantined
  • 1 individual at Harris Hill Elementary School tested positive, 1 quarantined
  • 1 individuals at Ledgeview Elementary School tested positive, 0 quarantined
  • 5 individuals at Sheridan Hill Elementary School tested positive, 3 quarantined

Additionally, on Thursday we received a notification that the ECDOH would be making a change regarding its quarantine release protocols. In line with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, it will now allow individuals in quarantine to be released after the completion of day 7 (i.e., day 8) as long as they meet certain conditions, namely:

  • A diagnostic COVID-19 test– with a specimen collected and tested within 48 hours before the end of the planned quarantine discontinuation (i.e., after five days following last exposure) – is negative; and,
  • No symptoms are reported during daily monitoring

Student Perspective on Mental Health

Each month I meet with a group of seniors who sit on the Superintendent’s Advisory Council. This past week, the group spent time discussing the issue of mental health, and the conversation was a reminder that Clarence is filled with students who are bright, curious, and engaged. The student-leaders talked about the importance of noticing when friends are struggling, making time to listen, and knowing when to seek more specialized support.

Although it sounds counter-intuitive, many experts have begun adding students from “high-achieving schools” to their “at risk” lists because of the unique pressures they experience. Listening to the feedback from the Superintendent’s Advisory Council, it was clear that few things are more important than the emotional wellbeing of our students, and that we all have a role to play when it comes to creating a supportive environment for kids.

As another week comes to a close, I just wanted to say thanks for your ongoing support. Your commitment to health and safety has kept us in-person for more than 10-weeks, and we are looking forward to a great rest of the year.

Hope you enjoy the weekend.

Matt Frahm, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools