All Ferndale Schools buildings are closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.

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Health & Safety

The health and safety of our students, staff, and families is our highest priority. Ferndale School District is closely monitoring this situation and is in frequent contact with public health authorities. As we are not experts in this area, we rely on the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), the local health departments and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for information and guidance. You can get the most current available information at michigan.gov/coronavirus.


 

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April 5, 2020
Food Service Changes - Staff Quarantine

Ferndale Family,

Last Monday, March 30th, a Food Service employee came to work and was exhibiting potential signs of COVID 19. The employee was immediately sent to get tested and has not returned to work. 

Today we learned that the employee did test positive for COVID 19. At this time, out of an abundance of caution, it is best that we follow the guidance of health experts and quarantine our food service staff who have been in contact with this employee. 

Our thoughts are with this member of our Ferndale Family. We all wish for a full recovery from this horrible virus.

Due to this quarantine of some members of our Food Service team, our food delivery schedule will be altered for the coming week. Food delivery scheduled for tomorrow, Monday, April 6th will only be at our FHS location. During the quarantine period preparation and distribution of meals to our Ferndale Family will be operated by a reduced staff or in partnership with another neighboring school district who also utilize our Food Service Company, Chartwells. We are working on the logistics of that now, which is what will cause the disruption in service. We will keep you updated as to when full service will resume later in the week. 

While we all must remain vigilante in this fight against COVID 19, the Food and Drug Administration has stated that, “Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. Therefore, we do not believe there is a need to conduct environmental testing in food settings for the virus that causes COVID 19 for the purpose of food safety. Cleaning and sanitizing the surfaces is a better use of resources than testing to see if the virus is present (Information dated March 27, 2020).

To read the entire Q&A from the Food and Drug Administration visit this link, https://www.fda.gov/food/food-safety-during-emergencies/food-safety-and-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19#workers.

Our Food Service provider Chartwells operates the Kitchen in Ferndale High School. In accordance with their procedures the kitchen is washed and sanitized daily. Once the COVID 19 outbreak started last month they also took additional steps to ensure the safety of the employees and food by separating workers into different individual stations to assist with social distancing.  They have and will continue to follow all FDA guidelines with regard to food safety during these trying times. 

I know this is a very worrisome situation. If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me personally. Together we will get through this. 

Stay home, stay safe,

Dania H. Bazzi, PhD

Superintendent
Ferndale Schools

April 2, 2020
School Buildings Closed to Students for Remainder of the School Year

Dear Ferndale Family,
Earlier today Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that Michigan schools (PreK-12th) would be closed for the remainder of the school year. K-12 school sports activities and other in-person extracurricular school activities are also suspended while any state of emergency or state of disaster prompted by COVID-19 is in effect.

The safety of our students and staff will always be our top priority and we fully support the Governor's decision to take all necessary measures to keep our school family and community safe. 

This is a time of great uncertainty and unfortunately we do not have all of the answers right now.  However, here is what we do know. 

  • Online instruction will continue through the regularly scheduled last day of school in June.
    • Each school district will be required to develop a learning plan for the remainder of the year that must be submitted and approved by our Intermediate School District, Oakland Schools.  
       
    • The State of Michigan is currently developing a generic learning plan template for districts to follow.  Each school district’s plan will be slightly different to ensure they are appropriate, equitable and accessible for all students and families.  Plans must also include how districts will manage and monitor student progress.
       
    • Once our Ferndale Schools plan is finalized and approved we will share it with the public.  We do not have a current timeline for when this will be completed as we do not have the States full expectations as of yet nor do we know how long it will take to gain approval from Oakland Schools.  We will keep you updated on the progress of the plans creation and approval.
       
    • If you are in need of technology to help facilitate online learning, please fill out this Google Form.Google Forms
  • Additional packets/resources will be mailed home in the coming weeks.
    • During this crisis we understand that some families are quarantining together at a residence that we do not have listed in our system.  In an effort to ensure your students' school work packet reaches them please ensure the address you are currently residing is up to date in the MiStar system.  To temporarily update your address during the crisis please contact our MiStar help desk email at mistarhelp@ferndaleschools.org.  Please include the address you would like us to use during the crisis along with your student(s) name & grade.
  • Seniors on track to graduate, will graduate and all other students will move up a grade. 
    • To our Seniors, I am especially sorry. The last few months of my high school career hold some of my fondest memories and it breaks my heart to know you will not have an opportunity to have many of these experiences. I promise you that we will hold a senior prom and commencement ceremony as soon as it is safe and responsible to do so.
  • Current high school juniors will be given an opportunity next fall to take the SAT sometime in October, to make up for the state-funded college entrance exam they would have taken in April if schools had not been closed.
     
  • Food Service will continue through the end of the school year in June.
    • However, due to staffing levels we will be reducing the number of days we will be distributing food.  Please note that we will still provide food for the entire week, we will simply be distributing meals for multiple days at once.
       
      • During the week of Spring break will be distributing meals on Monday (April 6th) and Wednesday (April 8th) ONLY.
        • You will be able to pick up multiple meals on each of those days. 
    • After Spring break, Food Service will serve meals Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at Ferndale Upper, Ferndale High School and University High School from 10am to Noon (you will be able to pick up multiple meals on each of those days). 
  • Next week we will pause instruction for Spring Break.  Instruction will resume on Monday, April 13th.

I am sure our entire Ferndale Family has many more questions about how this closure will impact our school community. As we learn more and finalize our plans we will share that information in the coming days.

Today’s decision from Governor Whitmer was not the outcome any of us wished for. We want nothing more than to return to the classroom to see all of your smiling faces, eager to learn. Unfortunately, at this time, that simply is not possible. We promise to do everything we can to ensure our students have the best educational experience possible moving forward.

If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Stay home, stay safe.

In Education,
Dania H. Bazzi, PhD

March 30, 2020
Oakland County’s Interactive Map Displays COVID-19 Cases by Zip Code


“Any of us is at risk of getting COVID-19. All of us must take the maximum precautions at this time. Please, please, please stay home. Follow the governor’s orders. Take this seriously. We have not reached our peak yet,” Coulter said.

County Executive David Coulter announced that residents can now view the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases by zip code on a map which can be found on the county’s coronavirus website, OakGov.com/COVID. Coulter and the Oakland County Health Division cautioned that these maps do not provide a complete picture of how the disease is being transmitted. The maps show in which zip codes confirmed COVID-19 cases live, but do not indicate a complete number of infected individuals OR where they were exposed to the disease.

“Although there may be a higher rate in a certain city, village, or township or zip code, that is not necessarily where they were exposed,” said Leigh-Anne Stafford, Oakland County health officer.

“Just because a community has more or fewer cases, it is not an indication of the relative safety in those communities,” Coulter said. “COVID-19 is in every community in Oakland County. No matter where you live, you should stay at home and take the precautions we’ve talked about so often, especially if you must go out.”

There are numerous factors which can contribute to a higher number in a community including access to health care, access to COVID-19 testing sites, and it could be an indication of something going on in the community.

For more information, go to Oakland County’s COVID-19 dashboard at OakGov.com/COVID.

March 23, 2020
Governor Whitmer Signs “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order
Governor directs all non-critical businesses to close, residents to stay home

Governor directs all non-critical businesses to temporarily close, all Michiganders to stay home or six feet away from others during COVID-19 crisis

LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” Executive Order (EO 2020-21), directing all Michigan businesses and operations to temporarily suspend in-person operations that are not necessary to sustain or protect life. The order also directs Michiganders to stay in their homes unless they’re a part of that critical infrastructure workforce, engaged in an outdoor activity, or performing tasks necessary to the health and safety of themselves or their family, like going to the hospital or grocery store.

Effective at 12:01 am on March 24, 2020, for at least the next three weeks, individuals may only leave their home or place of residence under very limited circumstances, and they must adhere to social distancing measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when they do so, including remaining at least six feet from people from outside the individual’s household to the extent feasible under the circumstances.

In just 13 days, we’ve gone from 0 to over 1,000 COVID-19 cases,” said Governor Whitmer. “This is an unprecedented crisis that requires all of us working together to protect our families and our communities. The most effective way we can slow down the virus is to stay home. I know this will be hard, but it will be temporary. If we all come together, get serious, and do our part by staying home, we can stay safe and save lives.”  

“Taking aggressive action to protect our communities is the most important thing we can do to mitigate further spread of COVID-19,” said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Deputy for Health and Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun. “If we do this now, we can make sure our hospitals and healthcare workers are prepared to take care of the sickest people. It is crucial that people do the right thing by staying home and staying safe.” 

Executive Order 2020-21 prohibits all businesses and operations from requiring workers to leave their homes, unless those workers are necessary to sustain or protect life or to conduct minimum basic operations. Businesses and operations are to designate the workers that meet those criteria, and must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons in the performance of that necessary in-person work. 

Workers that are necessary to sustain or protect life include those in health care and public health, law enforcement and public safety, grocery store workers, and more. For a full list of these critical infrastructure workers, click the link to Executive Order 2020-21 at the bottom of this page. 

Additionally, under Executive Order 2020-21, all public and private gatherings of any number of people occurring among persons outside a single household are temporarily prohibited. People may leave the house to perform for limited, necessary purposes, and may engage in outdoor activities like walking, hiking, running, cycling, or any other recreational activity, consistent with remaining at least six feet from people from outside a person’s household and with other restrictions imposed by prior executive orders.

Michigan is currently in the top five states in the nation in number of confirmed COVID-19 cases. Several governors across the country have taken similar steps to protect their communities from the spread of COVID-19, including governors Mike DeWine (R-OH), Andrew Cuomo (D-NY), J.B. Pritzker (D-IL), Tom Wolf (D-PA), Gavin Newsom (D-CA), John Bel Edwards (D-LA), Phil Murphy (D-NJ), and Ned Lamont (D-CT).  

Patients with confirmed infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is:  

  • If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.       

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.         
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.         
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.         
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.         
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.        

  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.       

Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus
This press release will be translated and made available in Arabic and Spanish at www.michigan.gov/whitmer  

March 23, 2020
Spring Break Camps Cancelled

Due to today's extension of our school closure (until April 13th) according to Governor Whitmer's order, we regret to inform you all that we will have to cancel all Spring Break Camps.

March 16, 2020
Tentative Return Date - April 13th

After consulting with the FEA and other Oakland County School Districts, we have determined that Spring Break will continue as originally planned (April 6th-10th).

Due to the uncertainty created by the rapidly evolving nature of the the COVID-19 outbreak and the many logistical hurdles we currently face, there is not a responsible way to change spring break at this time. We want our students back in school as soon as it is safe, and logistically feasible to do so.

Thank you for your understanding during these challenging times.

As of now, our plan is to return to school on Monday, April 13th. Please know that this date is subject to change based upon guidance from Governor Whitmer and health officials.

Please email me if you have any questions or concerns. We are here to help. 

Take care,

Dania

dania.bazzi@ferndaleschools.org

March 13, 2020
Identified Locations of Virus Contamination

Pontiac, Mich., March 13, 2020 —The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Thursday night announced two additional presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in Oakland County resulting in three total cases in the county. Both new cases are adult males, one with no known travel history, the other with history of domestic travel. Oakland County Health Division (OCHD) is identifying close contacts of these individuals, assessing for risk and determining management of those exposed.

Out of an abundance of caution, anyone that was present at the following locations on the dates and times listed below should be alert for symptoms of COVID-19. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. If any develop, stay at home and promptly call a healthcare provider or hospital prior to arriving so that the appropriate preventive measures can be put in place.

DISCLAIMER: This is NOT an exhaustive list, by any means. Please remember to act with an abundance of caution if you are experiencing any symptoms. Also remember that carriers of diseases may not be experiencing or exhibiting symptoms, but can still transmit.

March 1, 2020

March 4, 2020

March 5, 202

March 6, 2020

March 7, 2020

March 8, 2020

  • Subway, 6260 28th St SE, Grand Rapids, 11:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
  • Jimmy Johns, 5925 28th St SE, Grand Rapids, 11:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
  • Burger King, 1515 E Grand River Ave, Portland, 3:45-4:00 p.m.

“We must all pull together as a community and implement the stringent mitigation strategies essential to slow the spread of this virus,” Oakland County Executive David Coulter said. “I have instructed county staff to use all tools available to protect the elderly, support students as schools close, and educate the public on restricting large gatherings.”

Coulter has directed the following actions as part of the County’s ongoing coronavirus preparedness efforts:

  • Full activation of the Emergency Operations Center to enable the county to assist our partners and stakeholders with coordinating resources and response to this public health emergency.
  • Public health orders to enforce actions aimed at reducing disease spread may be implemented.
  • Continue essential county services; support online options; explore grace periods and fee reductions; encourage teleworking and expansion of emergency leave policies to support county employees.
  • Intensify social distancing strategies by employers, faith-based institutions and entertainment venues.
  • Support for students out of school and in need of healthy food options and health care services.

Some people that may be at higher risk of getting very sick from this illness includes:

  • Older adults
  • People who have serious chronic medical conditions such as heart or lung disease and diabetes
March 12, 2020
Schools Closed - Beginning on Monday, March 16th

Ferndale Family,

In accordance with guidance just handed down from Gov. Whitmer and to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus, Ferndale Schools will be closed immediately until April 5th.

Staff should report to your buildings at 8am tomorrow morning to prep for a transition to online instruction.

We will send a further update tomorrow with additional logistical details for students and families.

We thank you for your patience and flexibility in the coming weeks. Together we will get through this.


Important Steps to Take

Be Responsible

Preventative Hygiene is the most important step to protect yourselves. 

  • Thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water.
    1. Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
    2. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
    3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
    4. Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
    5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
  • Limit or avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are feeling sick. Even if your symptoms are not similar to COVID-19, you may still be exposing yourself to unnecessary risk in your health-compromised state.

Be Considerate

Be sensitive to neighbors from varying backgrounds, treating everyone equally and respectfully. No race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender or sexual orientation makes someone more likely to carry or communicate this disease. The world health organization has declared COVID-19 is a pandemic. The viral disease is not isolated to a particular country, and it is vital that we avoid stereotypical assumptions or discriminatory actions.

Locally, from Oakland County

Read about current Oakland County information at OakGov.com

Statewide, from the Michigan.gov

Read the latest available information at michigan.gov/coronavirus.

Nationally, From the Center for Disease Control (CDC):

Early information out of China, where COVID-19 first started, shows that some people are at higher risk of getting very sick from this illness. This includes:

  • Older adults
  • People who have serious chronic medical conditions like:
    • Heart disease
    • Diabetes
    • Lung disease

Read more from the CDC on Coronavirus