August 13, 2020
The MPA COVID-19 planning and implementation process is focused on risk-reduction with a multi-layered approach to reducing the risk of transmission when students and staff return to campus. Our planning process is grounded in a variety of quantitative and qualitative considerations as we consider moving our return to school dial. The quantitative metrics have been vetted by our MPA Community Advisory Group and outside professionals that have developed COVID-19 transmission and testing data in order to understand the local conditions and community spread.
These metrics include local data points on a variety of factors such as the case and new infection rate, testing rate, travel restrictions, and the reproduction number, or how many new cases are spreading for each infected individual. These metrics have thresholds that help us to think through our dial stops. However, this data alone does not provide the complete picture for our planning or the adjustments we anticipate making throughout the school. Additional qualitative or social factors we are monitoring and weighing include: the current infection or spread within our own MPA community, staff and student overall attendance, travel restrictions, our peer school decisions, recommendations from the state and federal officials, and of course, as we experienced this past spring, the Governor’s emergency orders for staying at home and business closures. These factors work in conjunction with our weekly metric monitoring to provide the complete picture for reopening campus and which mode of learning we are in at any given time.
We also recognize moving the dial between virtual learning, hybrid models, and in-person instruction impacts your family in personal ways. MPA is committed to transparency and frequent communication to help you prepare and plan for your student’s school year. Our return to campus plan remains focused on opening to stay open, which often means erring on the side of caution, and beginning with small steps in order to build back our capacity to once again have our full community on campus again as soon as we can. While grounded in data, our plan is built around flexibility and adaptability in order to adjust and change when and where we need it.