Sept. 3, 2020
Ray-Pec Parents,

Thank you once again for your patience, grace and support as we work through this school year together.

An Update

As we approach the end of week two, we have been made aware of isolated positive cases of COVID-19 among our students or staff. As you know, we have communicated those cases to you as we have become aware of them. When cases occur, we work with the Cass County Health Department (CCHD) to identify other students or staff members who may need to quarantine based on their exposures to the positive case.

This week, I had the opportunity to listen to a discussion of Kansas City area chief medical officers (CMO) about the current pandemic. The CMOs who spoke were a group of infection control doctors in leadership positions at area hospitals. They emphatically stressed that the best ways to combat spread of the virus are face coverings, physical distancing, and consistent hand washing. These are the cornerstones of what we are trying to do at Ray-Pec.

The Main Point

The primary point of this week’s email is something I heard from the CMO discussion. One significant area of concern on which the CMOs commented was the social gatherings that occur among students and families. While we all long for the days where we can return to unrestrained physical gatherings, because of the current situation, the CMOs believe we need to be very strict about how we gather with others. I couldn't agree more. Over the past week, stories of students gathering for long periods of time, without face coverings and without physical distancing, have become more common. This has resulted in quarantines for several students after they were in contact with COVID-19 positive individuals. These quarantines could have been avoided had students not gathered together. I know we have the need to be together, and I celebrate the fact our students and families have strong connections with one another. However, adherence to best practices in combating the spread of the virus needs to be at the top of our minds. Physical distancing, wearing face coverings, washing hands frequently, staying home if you have symptoms of COVID-19, and following isolation or quarantine directions from the CCHD are commitments we need to continue to make. As we move into the Labor Day weekend, I ask that you and your children critically think about the personal interactions outside of your immediate family.

The Board of Education and I truly appreciate your support. We all need to continue to be vigilant in combating the spread of this virus so that every student has a chance to continue to attend our schools, participate in activities, and have a great school year. 

Thank you for entrusting your children to the Ray-Pec School District.

Mike Slagle

I am passionately driven by the belief that Everyone Is Created To Flourish