December 17, 2020
To Our District 115 Parents and Guardians:

In my December 16, 2020 adaptive pause update to our school community I shared that remote learning will be the default instructional modality for LFHS students in the second semester. By opting into e-Hybrid, in-person learning and/or participating in extracurricular activities, students are committing to a variety of important mitigation measures including participating in mandatory COVID-19 gateway testing initially and other forms of screener testing in the future. 

Required COVID-19 Testing
We have received questions from the community regarding our authority to require COVID-19 testing for e-Hybrid, in-person students.

Under the Illinois School Code, school districts have the authority to mandate viral tests for students just as we require current health, dental, and vision examinations. The School Code also gives Illinois schools the authority to make operational decisions to protect the health and safety of those in our building.

Members of the community have also asked about CDC guidance indicating that school COVID-19 testing should be offered on a voluntary basis. While we respect the CDC, we see no credible basis for its conclusion and are not legally obligated by it. 

Filing for an Exception
Allowing exceptions increases the risk that an asymptomatic student could spread the virus to other members of the school community, putting both their health and in-person instruction at risk. Families may request an exception from the testing requirement that will be reviewed on an individual basis. If you would like to learn more about this process (available following Winter Break), please send an email to covidtestinginfo@flschools.net. 

Staying Open
Our goal is reopen Lake Forest High School on January 19 and keep it open. A collective commitment to all of our risk mitigation efforts, including COVID-19 testing, gives us a much better chance of doing so.

Sincerely,
Michael V. Simeck
Superintendent