Dear Carmel Christian Family, 
 
Thanksgiving break is right around the corner and we are mindful that many of our CCS families will travel and gather with extended family, increasing the risk of COVID-19 exposure. In light of this reality coupled with the steady case increase in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, and other states, Carmel Christian School will operate in the Cougars at Home operational mode from Tuesday, December 1 - Friday, December 4. School leadership, in consultation with the Campus Health & Safety team, is taking this action to facilitate a safe return to campus following the Thanksgiving break.  
We will return to campus on Monday, December 7. ON CAMPUS learning continues to be our primary goal and we believe taking this precautionary measure will go a long way to safeguard the continued health of the CCS family. It will also allow us to be on campus for the two weeks leading up to Christmas Break, which includes Middle & High School exams (December 14-18). Holding first semester exams on campus is a high priority and makes the safe return from Thanksgiving break particularly important. 
 
Implementing Cougars at Home for this period of time allows time for any incidence of COVID-19 (or other illness) to emerge while students, faculty and staff are still off campus. Allowing additional time for symptom development or knowledge of exposure, prior to returning to campus, will result in less impact on fellow students and faculty and the CCS community as a whole.

We realize shifting to Cougars at Home is a sacrifice for everyone involved. In order to maximize the benefit of this sacrifice, please reduce unnecessary exposure while on Thanksgiving Break AND during the Cougars at Home (Dec 1 - Dec 4) period. Each of us taking responsibility and exercising caution will result in the blessing of returning to campus on December 7. 

Over the Thanksgiving break, please also continue to self-report if you or someone in your household has been exposed to COVID-19, are awaiting a COVID-19 test result or have tested positive for COVID-19. Click here to confidentially inform the COVID-19 Task Force of a possible exposure. 
 
Cougars at Home will provide a live (synchronous), remote educational experience on a modified schedule as follows:  
  • Kindergarten: 8:15 a.m.-1:00 pm
  • Grades 1-5: 8:15-1:30 p.m.
  • Middle School: 8:00 am - 1:30 pm
  • High School: 8:00 am - 1:30 pm
 
Divisional principals will send detailed instructions on Friday, November 20. Students will take their learning materials and devices home when leaving for the Thanksgiving Break, so they will be equipped for this adjustment. Pathways sessions will follow divisional Cougars at Home schedules. Some adjusted session times may be required to accommodate classroom schedules.
 
At this time, Middle and High School Athletics will continue on campus during the Cougars at Home period. CCS sports teams operate as a cohort and will continue to uphold Campus Health & Safety protocols during all practices and games. High School Play auditions will be held virtually on December 5.  
 
Our task force planned for remote learning before the school year began and we had a successful experience with the High School division a few weeks ago. We are committed to working closely with local health officials and our school families to ensure the continued health & safety of our community. We feel this is a prudent step to safeguard our faculty, students and families and to maximize our time in ON CAMPUS learning.  
 
I pray you have a blessed and safe holiday.