When and how will Levine make a decision about re-opening school?
Levine's administrative team, as well as its board, will be continuing to meet regularly via remote conferencing. A determination as to extending school closure beyond this current two week period will be made after our meetings on Wednesday, March 25, and prior to Friday, March 27, and will be communicated promptly.
Regarding how Levine will make its decision, the chief factors include the following: determinations and/or recommendations made by CDC, the federal government, and state government authorities; our regional DFW-area district public school system decisions; decisions made by a significant number of private schools in the Dallas area alongside decisions recommended by our Jewish day schools in cooperation with the Council for Jewish Education at the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas. In other words, our decision will need to be in consort with general societal needs regarding self-quarantine and social distancing, as determined by numerous governmental and health officials.
Just yesterday, several of our DFW-area ISD school districts announced they "will be closed indefinitely." Of course, we will be monitoring these decisions going forward, which will be a significant factor in determining our own closure period.
What about Passover Break -- what are the chances Levine can operate school on several days in the middle of
Passover Break, scheduled for April 8-April 19?
Levine Academy will hold to its entire Passover Break -- from April 8 thru April 19. Our religious mission, traditions, and strictures dictate that we respect the entire Passover Break, so that there will be no school days operating during these days. Holding school during Chol Hamoed, or on the "middle days" of Passover, would necessitate strict preparations of our school facility that would be impossible to accomplish during this period of school closure; thus, we will remain closed throughout Passover, consistent with our annual calendar. This will mean that, should closure be extended beyond this two week period, our students' engagement with Levine-At-Home will conclude at the end of the school day on Tuesday, April 7 [at least conclude for the duration of the Passover Break].
If Levine decides to close beyond these two weeks, and thus remains closed between now and through Passover Break, then when will it make a decision regarding the resumption of school on April 20?
Levine will issue a decision either on Monday, April 13 or Tuesday, April 14 on whether school will resume on Monday, April 20.
Are the Middle School overnight trips still happening this spring? When will the school make a decision about the 6th Grade trip? The 8th Grade Israel trip?
Both of these trips are scheduled for May, and Levine will need to make a decision very soon after the Passover Break regarding going forward with them. In the meantime, Levine will not cancel these trips, but will wait for guidelines or decisions from officials in Texas and Israel regarding whether these trips can launch.
Will school be extended into the summertime if Levine closes down all the way through Passover break?
Levine's educational services, via our Levine-At-Home operations, will continue throughout our closure period [apart from Passover Break]. We want our families' summer plans and our school's camps to move forward as scheduled, and we do not want to place these commitments on hold. Thus, Levine intends to maintain its existing annual calendar by keeping to its scheduled end-of-school-year dates along with its summer camp launch dates.
What about tuition -- does Levine plan to issue refunds or credits? What about payments for lunch or Extended Care?
Despite the temporary closure of the facility, the teaching process for our students will be continuing during this time. Our faculty will continue to work diligently to prepare lessons for all of our children and will be communicating with parents as well to ensure that education continues.
It is important to know that the school does not have the capacity for reimbursement or to issue temporary relief payments to families, as some parents have asked. We are not a granting agency; we are a non-profit school that operates on an extremely tight, break-even budget, with contractual commitments that remain in force for faculty, personnel, facility service contracts, energy and internet contracts, curricular subscriptions, multiple insurance coverages, and much more, even when there are no students in the building. We must continue to pay our teachers straight through the entire year, even during times of pandemic, which is our legal obligation.
All of us in the school business know that the burden of ongoing childcare for single parents and for dual-working households can be overwhelming. The matter of child coverage is of particular interest to our families with children in our early childhood program -- an acute problem that is emerging nation-wide. But the necessity of social distancing to slow the spike in the virus spread is of highest priority everywhere in the world and supplants these hardships, according to the health officials.
Should we learn of any relief or support programs offered by the government or by any of our social service agencies, we will share these with our families. Also, should any of our families be experiencing difficulty with meeting school payment obligations, please communicate requests for leniency or alternative payment options by contacting our Director of Finance & Operations, Brad Fleury, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the matter of payments for lunch or Extended Care, we will be analyzing this further and will report back once we understanding the situation fully and know what is possible for the school to do.
Thank you for all of your questions! If you have a question to share, please submit to email@example.com.
Thank you and be well,
Head of School
PLEASE KNOW THE SITUATION REMAINS FLUID AND DECISIONS CAN BE MADE AT ANY TIME THAT COULD ALTER THE TIMEFRAME SPELLED OUT IN THIS FAQ EDITION-TODAY, TOMORROW, OR NEXT WEEK. WE WILL CONTINUE TO MESSAGE THE COMMUNITY WITH NEW INFORMATION, RESPONSES TO NEW QUESTIONS, OR WITH ANY INFORMATION HELPFUL TO OUR COMMUNITY.