Dear CCS Families,

Thank you for your continued flexibility this week. We enjoyed welcoming Elementary students back to campus, while Middle and High School students are doing a tremendous job with Cougars at Home. We are grateful for the additional days to observe case trends in our upper divisions, allowing us to make a more informed decision regarding their safe return to campus. Since our last communication, we have been notified of a few additional members of our CCS family who tested positive for COVID-19. As of this morning, 3 members of our High School community and 1 member of our Middle School community have reported testing positive for COVID-19 since Friday. We have not received any positive case reports for the Elementary community this week. 

Given the declining trend in COVID-19 positive reports in our CCS community, Middle and High School will return to campus on Thursday, December 10 for Cougars on Campus on a regular schedule. 

Middle and High School Athletics and Arts activities will resume on Thursday, December 10. 

Mrs. Nelson will send an email to High School families this week regarding the High School schedule for the week of December 14, due to the cancellation of exams. 

Additional health and safety modifications will be employed in all divisions to ensure the continued well-being of faculty, staff and students including, but not limited to, virtual chapel delivery and a pause on gathering Middle and High School Houses and Crews. On Thursday, December 10, Carmel Cafe will resume the lunchroom seating and menu options which have been available this school year. 
                 
COUGARS AT HOME (All Divisions) ~ WEEK OF JANUARY 4-8
We are grateful for the adjustment to Cougars at Home following the Thanksgiving break, resulting in a lower incidence of exposure and required quarantine. Due to the success of this decision, we will follow the same protocol after the Christmas break. Carmel Christian School will operate in the Cougars at Home operational mode from Monday, January 4 - Friday, January 8. 
 
We will return to campus on Monday, January 11. On campus learning continues to be our primary goal and we believe taking this precautionary measure will facilitate a safe return to campus following the Christmas break.  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.
 
Spirit Week & Homecoming activities, currently scheduled for the week of January 4, are being re-imagined for a later time. Please pray for creativity as our teams develop meaningful solutions to engage the CCS community! 
 
Please join us to remain diligent in monitoring and safeguarding the CCS community. Faculty, staff, students and families in all divisions should comply with the following protocols: 

STAY HOME WHEN ILL
One of the greatest ways to protect our community is to simply stay home if you are not feeling well. If you sense ANY changes in your health, be cautious and stay home to see if symptoms develop. If symptoms do not develop, please speak to a school nurse about returning to campus. 

REPORT ALL COVID-19 EXPOSURE, TESTING & POSITIVE CASES
Each CCS Faculty, Staff, Student and Family must self-report if you or someone in your household has been:
  • Exposed to COVID-19
  • Are awaiting a COVID-19 test result 
  • Have tested positive for COVID-19.  
Keeping us informed enables our team to effectively monitor the situation and make informed, prayerful and responsible decisions. 
Click here to confidentially inform the COVID-19 Task Force of any of the instances above.  

SUBMIT ABSENCE FORMS for ALL ABSENCES
Submit the divisional Student Absence Form (Carmel Parent>ES,MS,HS icon) ANY TIME your student is absent from school. It is very important that we understand the nature of every student absence. 

UPDATED FACE-COVERING PROTOCOL
Please be reminded of the updated Face-Covering Protocols as students return to campus. Detailed information can be found on the Cougar Community: COVID-19 page under the “Face Coverings” tab. 

UPDATED QUARANTINE PROTOCOL
Please be reminded of the updated Quarantine Protocol which can be found on the Cougar Community: COVID-19 page under the “When to Keep Your Student Home” tab. The school nurses will continue to communicate the acceptable date to return to school following a period of quarantine. 

For health-related questions, please contact our school nurses at nurse@carmelchristian.org

Thank you for your continued support as we partner through this year. The Lord has been faithful to our CCS community and we continue to lean into His wisdom and grace on a daily basis. I pray that HIS grace and peace will be real in your life and in your home this Christmas season.