Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (April 2, 2020):

The Governor's Executive Order was provided to local school districts this morning through e-mail approximately 10 minutes prior to the Governor's scheduled press conference. The Executive Order requires the Michigan Department of Education, in collaboration with the Michigan Association of Intermediate School Administrators, to develop and distribute a plan for districts to follow by April 3, 2020. The Executive Order then requires the West Shore Educational Service District to approve or reject district plans beginning on April 8, 2020.

Superintendents across the State have a town hall meeting with Governor Whitmer on Monday, April 6, 2020 and we expect to have more of our questions answered at that time. The West Shore Educational Service District is holding a principal's meeting tomorrow for principals to review the learning template mentioned above. The District will continue to work with District staff and have its plan submitted to the West Shore Educational Service District so that approval of that plan can take place as soon as possible according to the Executive Order.

We are hopeful to have our plan approved shortly thereafter April 8, 2020, with an implementation date of April 13, 2020, or sooner if the timing of the plan approval allows. This implementation date is dependent upon plan approval.

Full details of the plan will be released next week, as we work to ensure that the plan that we have been developing complies with the Governor's Executive Order, and it meets the needs of our students and families regarding the ability to equitably access the District's plan for the continuation of learning.

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (April 2, 2020):

Please click on the link below to see the attached letter to parents and guardians of students at Ludington Area Schools regarding the Governor's Executive Order 2020-35.

        Stay at home   Questions about COVID-19


Governmental Resources:

Click the link below to access the Governor's press release regarding the closure of all schools:

Click the link below to access the interim recommendations being made by Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services:

Click the link below to access the updated guidance document issued to schools by Dr. Michael F. Rice (Superintendent of Public Instruction, Michigan Department of Education) and Dr. Joneigh Khaldun (Chief Medical Executive and Chief Deputy for Health, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services):


Resources from Spectrum Health:

As a service to the community, Spectrum Health is offering free COVID-19 virtual screenings (24 hours per day / 7 days per week) to people in the state of Michigan who are experiencing symptoms. Learn more by clicking on the links below:

                                Spectrum Health Poster - Keeping Michigan Informed                                   Spectrum Health Poster - Experiencing Symptoms                                                           Figure 1: Keeping Michigan Informed                    Figure 2: Experiencing Symptoms


Click on the expandable content boxes below for more information on the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19):

Archived Superintendent Messages

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 30, 2020):

Dear Oriole Family:

While these are definitely uncertain times, it is expected that the Governor will make announcements about the remainder of school for this year, along with several details that schools have been waiting on to put plans into action. That announcement may come as early as Tuesday, March 31, 2020. Many of the details have been finalized, although there are still some things being worked out at the state level as of this communication.

One thing is clear, in times of uncertainty, levels of stress and anxiety often increase in people. From the start, LASD has been committed to doing what we can to help take care of the basic needs of our students and the families that we serve. That is why a significant focus has been placed on providing thousands of meals every day to eligible students in our area. The need is great and we must take care of these needs before learning is maximized.

The next step that the District will be taking is to implement the attached student counseling, social work, and intervention support survey form. This form is intended to allow us to connect with students and families in need through either direct phone conversations, or through other technology platforms like Zoom or Google Hangouts.

Getting support mechanisms in place is critical to being able to roll out any type of at home learning plan to get us through the remainder of the year. Discussion of these types of plans has been taking place throughout Michigan as several states have recently released similar plans after being closed for the remainder of the school year. Details will be provided soon, but stay tuned to learn more information as it is released this week. Please know that our first priority is to take care of the basic needs and well-being of our students and families.

If you have a student that is in need of counseling, social work, or intervention support focused on the social and emotional well-being of your child, please complete this form and we will do our best to connect you with one of the District's providers. Thank you for all of your patience through these difficult times.

Student counseling, social work, and intervention request form: https://forms.gle/ijq7hXjdF3axmk4D7

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 27, 2020):

Dear Class of 2020:
While there is no doubt that we are in uncertain times, please know that we care deeply about you and the impact that you have had on Ludington Area Schools and our greater school community.

I have heard from many that concerns exist about graduation and the celebration of all of your accomplishments over the last several years. We continue to be in discussion with legislative leaders, the Michigan Department of Education, and leaders around the state from other schools just like Ludington.

As we learn more, of which I expect to hear more within the next week or so, please know that we will be in touch with each of you about end of year activities.

Without question, we will celebrate all of your accomplishments, and we will hold a graduation ceremony at a time that we are able to do so. Please stay in communication with your teachers and the school, be on the lookout for a communication to be sent to you soon, and stay positive through all of this. We will do our best to support you through these unprecedented times and know that we care deeply about you! Thank you for being an Oriole! Go O’s!

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 26, 2020):

While the Governor's Executive Order closes school buildings to students for instructional purpose, and may not apply to the use of school playground equipment for recreational purposes, public access to playgrounds may contribute to increasing the spread of COVID- 19. Playgrounds are not being sanitized and should not be used until further notice. Therefore, playgrounds have been closed by the District. Please be advised that members of the community who continue to use playground and recreational spaces owned by the District do so at their own risk.

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 26, 2020):

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 25, 2020):

In an effort to continue to help parents and children through these unprecedented times, the District is providing a link to high quality, research based practices for families to follow in supporting mental health through the COVID-19 pandemic. The District cares deeply about the families that it serves, and felt the need to share this information with you.

The University of Michigan has been a leader in perinatal, infant and early childhood mental health for many decades. The University's Department of Psychiatry has been instrumental in establishing the cutting-edge work that continues today through the innovative multidisciplinary Zero to Thrive (Z2T) initiative, led by Dr. Kate Rosenblum and Dr. Maria Muzik. The Department is focused on promoting the health and resilience of families through early childhood research, education, partnership, and service.

Another University of Michigan researcher and leading literacy expert, Dr. Nell Duke, supports this work. Ludington Area Schools is pleased to share this information and encourages families to download the information and resources on the Z2T website to help parents care for themselves, and to help children feel safe and more secure during these uncertain times. These are some of the best resources available to support the mental health needs of parents and children.

Zero to Thrive Website: https://zerotothrive.org

Once you have accessed the Z2T webpage, click on the Zero to Thrive COVID-19 Crisis Response button on the top of the page. Once you have done so, pdf documents to support families can be downloaded from that page. We hope that you find these documents useful and supportive of your families. Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay well!

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 23, 2020):

As you likely are aware, Governor Whitmer has issued Executive Order 2020-21, effective at 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 24, 2020.

This stay at home order temporarily requires the suspension of activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life, and applies to the operation of schools. This means that the state mandated school closure has been extended through this Executive Order, which expires at 11:59 pm on April 13, 2020. While I know that there are lots of questions pertaining to school, please know that the Governor shared that there will be more to follow on this topic in a future press conference that she will hold. We will update you as we learn more.

Please know that we are working to understand the order and its impact on our operation, and we will continue to keep our greater school community informed. As we learn more from the Michigan Department of Education, the Governor and the Executive Office, and our Legislature, we will provide those updates to you.

We are also working to understand the impact that this order, as well as other guidance from state and federal agencies has on our food service program and other services provided by the District. As we learn more, again, we will be in touch. For now, please know that the school closure has been extended by this Executive Order, which is linked to this message. Stay safe and stay healthy!

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 16, 2020):

The students and families of the Ludington Area School District are on our minds as we work through this state mandated and unprecedented, yet necessary, school closure. While this closure is in the best interest of the safety, health, and well-being of our entire school community, we know that this creates hardship for many of our families. Please complete this survey as a way for the District to stay in touch with those in our community most impacted by this school closure. We would love to know that you are either doing alright, but also be glad to help how we are able to if your family is experiencing a hardship. We will get through this together! It is great to be an Oriole!

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 13, 2020):

Updated Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 12, 2020):

This evening, Governor Whitmer announced that in order to slow the spread of Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Michigan, she is ordering the closure of all K-12 school buildings, public, private, and boarding, to students starting Monday, March 16 until Sunday, April 5. School buildings are scheduled to reopen on Monday, April 6.

Significant planning and additional preparation will occur through the evening tonight and throughout the day tomorrow, with additional communication taking place with families tomorrow. As we learn more about the details relating to the mandated school closure, we will be sure to share those with you.

In the meantime, all student extracurricular events and practices will be canceled or postponed, effective immediately, through the mandated closure.  Stay tuned for more information pertaining to the school closure and know that we are appreciative of your patience as we work through this. 

Message from Superintendent Kennedy (March 11, 2020):

Given the recent news surrounding Coronavirus (COVID-19), the District has developed the following webpage as a way to share information and communicate with our school community. This webpage will be updated regularly as a way to inform our community about the advisement that we are receiving and the decisions that we are making to keep our school community safe. You can expect constant updates to this page, as this virus is already having impacts on our schools and our events.

Please be assured that we are in constant communication with the District Health Department #10. These medical professionals are working directly with the experts from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We will continue to make decisions based upon facts and recommendations from our local, State, and Federal health experts.

The information provided to our community on this website has been provided to the District by the following partners: Dr. Jennifer Morse (Medical Director) for District #10 Health Department, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Spectrum Health. This information is focused on preventing the spread of disease, symptoms associated with the disease, along with information to help those who may be ill.

As always, student, staff, and school community safety, along with the health and well-being of everyone will drive the decisions that we make as a District. Specific recommendations and actions taken by the District are outlined in the expandable content box below. Thank you for your continued support of Ludington Area School District.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Resources

The following resources, documents, and links were added to our website from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to assist our school community in learning more about the disease, while also helping to further control the spread of disease and illness in our community.


Map and Statistics

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Handwashing Fact Sheet and Tips for Families

What to do if you are sick?


The webpage for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention pertaining to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) can be accessed by clicking on the link below:

District Health Department #10 Resources

Click on the link below to access the website of the District Health Department #10. This site has lots of helpful information for the general community, schools and childcare, government, businesses, and healthcare.


Dr. Jennifer Morse, the Medical Director at the District Health Department #10, has provided the following communication and update to school superintendents in the West Shore Educational Service District (WSESD).

The presentation below focuses on providing a brief update and definitions relating to the spread of disease, guidance on action that schools should take, along with other guidance to schools on the planning and preparation necessary to control the spread of disease. The document also provides information pertaining to the process used to determine school closure due to illness.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Resources

The District encourages our school community to visit the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) webpage below, as the page is updated regularly with the most up to date information as it pertains to COVID-19 in Michigan. 

For statistics relating to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in Michigan or for more information, visit the MDHHS website at the link below:

Information from the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA)

Per Mark Uyl, Executive Director for the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA), the Association is working with state and local health authorities to monitor the developing COVID-19 situation in Michigan. MHSAA encourages people to follow the CDC guidance regarding hand-washing, personal hygiene, and staying home when sick.

MHSAA is continually monitoring this situation. If it becomes necessary to make adjustments to MHSAA tournament events, decisions will be made to ensure a healthy and safe environment for everyone involved.

For the most up-to-date information, go to www.mhsaa.com/coronavirus.

World Health Organization Resources

Click on the link below to access the website of the World Health Organization (WHO). This site has lots of helpful information regarding precautions to protect yourself, tips and advice on travel, a list of frequently asked questions, several informative videos, technical guidance, plus an up to date situation dashboard that tracks the virus:

Critical Infrastructure Workers / Essential Workforce

Executive Order 2020-21 (EO):
"For purposes of this order, critical infrastructure workers are those who are necessary to conduct minimum basic operations that are strictly necessary to allow the business or operation to maintain the value of inventory and equipment, care for animals, ensure security, process transactions (including payroll and employee benefits), or facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely."
 
Further, the EO requires that "businesses and operations determine which of their workers are necessary to conduct minimum basic operations and inform such workers of that designation. Businesses and operations must make such designations in writing, whether by electronic message, public website, or other appropriate means.
 
Section 7 of the EO provides exception, allowing those employees who are "conducting minimum basic operations, as described in section 4(b) of the EO, after being designated to perform such work by their employers."
 
Next, the EO provides exception allowing those "who work or volunteer for businesses or operations, including both religious and secular non profit organizations that provide food, shelter, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals, individuals who need assistance as a result of this emergency, and people with disabilities" to be present on premises. In a clarifying message sent by the Governor and her office, she ruled that K-12 food service programs are a part of the critical infrastructure. She urged these services to continue while using precautionary measures and social distancing.
 
Ludington Area Schools designates the following staff members as essential members of the critical infrastructure as outlined within the Executive Order. These employees and volunteers are allowed to be present on District premises, only to the extent that they are performing a critical infrastructure need:

 

  • Payroll, employee benefits, and transaction processing: Mary Marble, Jesse Rickard, and Jason Kennedy; other clerical staff to support transaction processing, as strictly necessary.
  • Food service program: Donna Garrow and food service staff necessary to carry out the unanticipated school closure food service program. This includes any and all volunteers necessary to run the program, and extends to volunteers serving the Lakeshore Food for Kids program, as allowed under the Order.
  • Transportation: Deb Wilsey and transportation staff supporting the critical infrastructure need of providing food service to eligible students. Deb Wilsey is also authorized to be on site to regularly monitor the fuel tanks, fuel levels, and fueling needs of the county's law enforcement vehicles. This includes the ordering of fuel, as necessary, as well as to ensure the security of the District's transportation fleet.
  • All information and instructional technology staff: This includes technology staff necessary to facilitate the ability of other workers to work remotely and to protect the security of our technology infrastructure.
  • All custodial and maintenance staff: This includes the maintenance of District equipment and property, as well as to ensure the District's security through regular building checks. This may include the District's mechanics, if strictly necessary. This also includes the cleaning, disinfection, and sanitation of the District's facilities.
  • Professional staff: In the event that online instruction, remote learning, or continuous learning plans are mandated by the State of Michigan, becoming strictly necessary to meet the pupil membership day and clock hour requirements for the District to receive full state aid payments from the State, professional staff members will be indentified as such.
  • Note: For the purposes of these exceptions, only the number of people that is strictly necessary to carry out the critical infrastructure need will be allowed to be present on the premises.
All employees are directed to comply with the Executive Order. Any in-person activities that are required to maintain the critical infrastructure of the organization must be performed consistently with the social distancing practices and mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons described in section 5(c) and as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

American Red Cross Blood Drives Hawley Gymnasium

In healthcare settings all across the United States, donated blood is a lifesaving, essential part of caring for patients. The need for donated blood is constant, and blood centers are open and in urgent need of donations during this pandemic. The CDC encourages people who are well to continue to donate blood if they are able, even if they are practicing social distancing because of COVID-19. The CDC is supporting blood centers by providing recommendations that will keep donors safe. Examples of these recommendations include spacing donor chairs 6 feet apart, thoroughly adhering to environmental cleaning practices, and encouraging donors to make donation appointments ahead of time. The American Red Cross has been deemed an essential medical function and Ludington Area Schools is glad to support this mission to protect and save lives.

As a result, Hawley Gymnasium will be used periodically to support blood drives in our community. Members of the District's custodial staff, maintenance staff, and Randy Fountain will be designated as members of the essential workforce to support each of the blood drives hosted by Ludington Area Schools on behalf of the American Red Cross. Below you will find documents provided to the District by the American Red Cross:


Elementary School Construction Bond Project:
Through action of the Board of Education, The Christman Company has been appointed a member of the District's Bond Team, and serves as the Construction Manager for the May 2019 voter approved bond project in the Ludington Area School District ("District"). In an effort to allow the District to maintain the value of inventory, equipment, and to ensure the security of the District's property, as allowed by Section 4(b) of the Governor's Executive Order (2020-21), this written communication authorizes The Christman Company (Dan LaMore, Pat Zawacki, Ben Globke, and Ron Zweedyk), and its employees, along with any of its Trade Contractors working on behalf of the District and The Christman Company, to conduct these "minimum business operations" pursuant to the Executive Order.
 
It is further authorized that these individuals conduct in-person activities to: 

 

  1. Inspect the security of the site, daily to confirm that the jobsite remains secure.
  2. Verify that soil erosion controls are in place.
Pursuant to the Executive Order, it is expected that in-person activities must adopt social distancing practices and other mitigation measures to protect workers and patrons. The continued effort of the Christman Company to assist in the security of the District's property and the construction site are essential.

The EO can be found in its entirety in the link below: