• From: Margaret Weertz <weertzm@gpschools.org>
    Date: Sun, Nov 22, 2020 at 10:22 AM
    Subject: Re: [supers] recommendation from WCHD
    To: Gary Niehaus <niehaug@gpschools.org>
    Cc: SchoolBoard SchoolBoard <SchoolBoard@gpschools.org>

    Gary, Jon and Kathy,
    I talked to parents, teachers, trustees all day yesterday. Wayne County still has not closed us down. Macomb and Oakland County health departments seem ok to keep schools open. The CDC still recommends us to be in school face to face. The governor still says K-8 is safe. The privates are still open. If we go remote to Jan. 15, do you see a REALITY of going back then or any time this school year? Because closing for two weeks was not a reality. The cases have NOT gone down in 8 months of quarantines, mask wearing and shutdowns.

    Meanwhile, Partridge Creek, Meijer, gyms, salons, EVERYTHING else is still open besides restaurants, bars and casinos. People are doing their Christmas shopping and holidays. We are simply not educating kids. People are voting with their feet. They are walking away from our district.

    Here's what I'm convinced of:

    Kids are failing in record numbers.
    Our parents are filling up the private schools.
    Many parents are not coming back.
    This leadership won't stay in place.
    The board election was a rout.
    We are losing on all fronts.

    We didn't win the school board seats because parents are unhappy and their kids are miserable. We couldn't manage to get kids in school Sept. 8 while little Lakeshore Public Schools had the tenacity to do it this entire time.

    I want to be a lighthouse district. I want to be like Fraser where they have a superintendent who told parents we are going back F2F five days or choose remote and you have 5 days to choose. I want to be the leadership that says teachers must report to their buildings. I want to be the leadership that says we are soldiering through. Without sounding dramatic, FDR did not say Depressions suck and let's wait till it doesn't suck until we do something. We can't foresee a time when we won't have Covid so what do we do until then? We still need to educate kids and we are definitely not doing that. We have failure rates off the charts and giving them more of what's miserable is not the answer. Our special ed parents are not going to back down and there will likely be a lawsuit.

    I want this administration to say we NEED to go back. I don't want me to be the only one saying this. I don't want you to tell me just get the votes. I want you to believe in this. Right now I talk to people who have incredible bitterness toward this board, superintendent and deputy superintendent. There will be a point, perhaps already passed, when we lose any goodwill we had.


    On Fri, Nov 20, 2020 at 7:31 PM Gary Niehaus <niehaug@gpschools.org> wrote:
    FYI... Thanks, GCN

    Gary C. Niehaus
    GPPSS Superintendent

    Begin forwarded message:

    From: Randy Liepa <LiepaR@resa.net>
    Date: November 20, 2020 at 6:47:22 PM EST
    To: Supers <supers@groups.resa.net>
    Subject: [supers] recommendation from WCHD

    Hi everyone – attached is the official correspondence from WCHD for a strong recommendation to suspend instruction we discussed at the Superintendents meeting today. It is to on Wednesday at 11:59 pm – which in effect means (for those who wish to follow it, but are still in session, you can continue next week before thanksgiving).


    While I am sure there is much to either agree or disagree with in their recommendation, they did address a few of the issues we discussed today:


    · We have a start date with flexibility for next week if needed

    · It is strongly worded

    · It highlights the reason for the time period through January 15th being a period following the holiday

    · It does address ELL and Special Education students


    They also discussed the significant increase in cases (we had been in the 600’s per day – today over 1,000), which we cautioned against. They also are recommending a suspension of athletics through the same period, which was not what some were hoping for.


    Whether it be athletics or anything else, this is a recommendation, not a mandate – per the law. Many of you are in different places with your feelings on this – and can address this as you see fit.


    As always, best to each of you as you continue to navigate all of this in the most challenging of times.



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