COVID-19 Updates

February 23, 2022


Dear GHAPS Families,

As part of our ongoing commitment to keep you informed about changes taking place at Grand Haven Area Public Schools, we are writing to announce that beginning Monday, February 28, masks will no longer be required in our buildings. However, the CDC is still recommending masks in a school setting.

The welcome news of declining COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, combined with guidance from the Ottawa Department of Public Health and the External LinkMichigan Department of Health and Human Services,  have informed this decision. Masks will continue to be required on school buses, as this is a federal mandate.

The health and safety of our students and staff remain at the forefront. Students and staff that test positive will still be required to isolate for five days and upon return, mask for an additional five days. We will continue to use effective prevention strategies such as cleaning and disinfection protocols, and encouraging personal hygiene best practices like hand washing and covering coughs and sneezes. Please continue to be alert for symptoms of any illness, and keep your child home if he or she is sick.

Family conversations regarding masking will be helpful. During this change, we all need to remember to be kind and treat others with respect and dignity regardless of their masking choices. Please also make sure your child understands your family’s expectations with regard to mask use.

I am confident in saying that despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, our community has been steadfast in its commitment to provide a safe, supportive learning environment that promotes Success For All. Thank you for your continued trust and confidence in our district.

 

 

 

Dear GHAPS Families,

We want to share the good news with you regarding the updated K-12 School Quarantine and Isolation Guidelines from OCDPH. For districts such as ours that currently have a K-12 mask mandate, these new guidelines allow our students and staff to return to learning and work earlier while maintaining health and safety for others. GHAPS students and staff members will now be able to return to school after five days of isolation, rather than ten days for districts that do not have universal masking.

Linked here are the newly updated guidelines for your reference.  Our building office and quarantine staff will continue to provide guidance to families and staff in determining when isolation and/or quarantine are needed along with return dates.  We rely on parents to report positive cases and symptomatic students.  We appreciate your continued support in providing this vital information to our schools.

Contact tracing will be modified to focused areas of concern as we try to identify potential outbreak situations.  Please understand that students/staff may have exposures in the school setting to someone who is positive for Covid-19. Communication to parents/staff regarding exposure will only happen in specific circumstances.  Building Covid-19 cases will continue to be available to the public on the GHAPS dashboard.

As we continue to strive for the best learning environment for our students, we value and appreciate the collaboration, communication and support between our families and staff.

Additional resources:

Testing Sites:

https://doineedacovid19test.com/ (This is for eTrueNorth) primarily Meijer locations, but some Family Fare locations as well

https://nxgenmdx.com/covid-19-testing-mi/ NxGen Testing locations

https://www.miottawa.org/Health/OCHD/covid-19-testing-locations.htm OCDPH testing locations

https://www.walgreens.com/findcare/covid19/testing?ban=covid_vanity_testing Walgreens

Dear GHAPS Families,

Happy New Year! As we celebrate and reflect on 2021, I am reminded of your incredible commitment to Grand Haven Area Public Schools. In my 32 years with the district, I’ve seen firsthand the amazing things happening in our schools, fueled by our dedicated staff, teachers, administrators, Board of Education, families and community.

The team at GHAPS has stayed true to our commitment to Success for All even amidst the challenges we’ve faced. Our strategic plan focuses on how we can inspire all to learn by keeping our values central to each decision we make. We are student-centered and foster a culture of caring, while providing an excellent education that offers consistent growth opportunities.

As a lifelong learner, I am grateful to collaborate with you to ensure our district remains on its path of achievement and excellence. While there is always room for improvement, it’s important to recognize the truly exceptional nature of GHAPS. We have four National Blue Ribbon Schools and in 2021, U.S. News & World Report ranked Grand Haven High School and all of our elementary, middle and intermediate schools in the top 15% in Michigan. This is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the entire GHAPS community.

We believe that in-person learning is critical to student success. Students and staff alike enjoyed in-person learning for most of 2021, and that will continue to be our goal in 2022. In accordance with External Linkguidance from the Ottawa County Department of Public Health, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the temporary indoor mask requirement will remain in place for all K-12 students, staff and visitors during school hours and at the GHAPS Open Door program. Ultimately, I share in the desire to defeat COVID-19 and get back to normal so we can focus on what we do best: providing a high quality education in a safe, nurturing environment.

I am hopeful for an even better year ahead and am truly honored to lead you into 2022 as we carry on in our commitment to Success for All. Thank you for your ongoing support!
 
Sincerely,

Scott Grimes, Superintendent
Grand Haven Area Public Schools

Updated: 10/11/21

Dear GHAPS Families,

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the leadership team at GHAPS has relied heavily on guidance from public health experts to determine appropriate safeguards for our students and staff. Based on new recommendations from the Ottawa County Department of Public Health (OCDPH), the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the GHAPS Board of Education has voted to temporarily require masks indoors for all K-12 students, staff and visitors during school hours and at the GHAPS Preschool/Open Door program.

This mask requirement does not apply to extra-curricular activities, including athletics for 7-12 grade. Children two years old and younger, as well as individuals with an approved written medical exemption, are exempt. In addition, masks may be removed when individuals are more than 6’ from each other.

Once the COVID-19 risk level in Ottawa County drops into the “moderate” range for seven consecutive days, we anticipate that K-12 masking will not be required. As of August 13, OCDPH classified the county’s COVID-19 risk level as “high” based on the percentage of positive tests. As always, we will remain in close contact with OCDPH as conditions change.

The Board acknowledges that masks are not ideal in a learning environment, where interaction and engagement are such an important part of the educational process. But they believe this temporary K-12 mask requirement will give GHAPS the best possible chance of continuing in-person education. District-wide consistency is also important, given the many families with students in various buildings.

I understand that this decision is welcomed by some and opposed by others. Wherever you stand, I ask for your continued patience and understanding. We at GHAPS remain committed to Success for All and we are grateful for your important role in this mission.

Sincerely,

Andrew Ingall, Superintendent
Grand Haven Area Public Schools

 


 

 


 

2021-2022 District Level Communications