Superintendent's Letter: December 17, 2021
Dock Parents and Students,
Today is our last day of school with students before a two-week Christmas break. I hope you have a meaningful time with your family and friends over the break.
This week, the Dock administration and board have been reviewing the recent developments and recommendations regarding masking practices for Dock. As stated in our last letter, the PA Commonwealth Court released its decision that ruled the state mask order is void because it was not adopted in compliance with the regulatory review process. The decision of masking has now been shifted to each school to decide.
Effective December 18, the wearing of a face covering will be optional for students, employees, and spectators on both our campuses. As students return on January 3, we ask that each family decide whether or not your student should wear a mask. Dock asks that all our Dock community respect the different decisions individuals will make. We encourage sensitivity to those who make decisions that differ from your choice. Our Montgomery County Office of Public Health recommends that people continue to mask during these times of high transmission and around holidays. We will continue to follow mitigation practices such as quarantining, isolation, and contact tracing as required by the MC OPH. We encourage you to be attentive to your child’s health and ask that students stay home when having symptoms to protect our other students.
Dock will also be submitting a request for approval to participate in a Test to Stay (TTS) program. TTS is a COVID-19 prevention strategy that allows individuals who are identified as a close contact at school to a case of COVID-19 to continue to attend school and participate in co-curricular activities in modified quarantine for 7 days after the last day of exposure. To participate in TTS, individuals will need to opt-in to completing an antigen testing cadence for COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2 virus), remain symptom-free, and test negative to be able to remain in school and participate in co-curricular activities over their 7-day modified quarantine period. The student would need to wear a mask during the time of modified quarantine in order to remain on campus. We will keep you updated on that process and provide clear details after approval.
We know these issues are emotional and difficult for many of us. We will continue to make the best decisions we can for the good of our students. We will continue to invite our school family to have patience and extend grace and respect to each other as we navigate this journey.
May the peace and joy of Jesus be particularly present this season for you! We look forward to a great school year ahead when we return in January.
Dr. Conrad Swartzentruber
Read all of the Superintendent's Letters:
"I just want to take a moment to say thank you. It is obvious that Dock has spent time and prepared a plan that takes into account the many different thoughts, opinions, concerns, and frustrations of all families during this pandemic. While it is impossible to please everyone, it is clear the two options you have outlined have the biggest probability of satisfying the majority of your families. Providing two options is so refreshing and I realize this will be much extra work for your staff and teachers…thank you! This will be our oldest child's first year at the school, and we could not be more pleased with our choice of Dock!"
Dock Elementary Family
"I am confident in the decisions made by the administration, board and pandemic team. There are two options, on-campus learning or remote learning, for Early Childhood through 12th grade. Thank you, Dock administrators, for spending your summer planning for the fall. I know many families from other schools are concerned about the options available to them. Dock has a large facility with a smaller number of students, so safety, academics, and social interactions will not be compromised!"