COVID-19 Update

Last updated: March 30, 2020

The Independence Mission Schools (IMS) network holds the well-being, health and safety of students and staff as a top priority. With this in mind, we are committed to taking all necessary precautions to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus COVID-19 in our schools.

IMS is working closely with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and carefully taking the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and keep you informed of our actions.

Read on for more information about COVID-19 and what you and your children can do to protect yourselves and others from the spread of all types of viruses. Continue to check this page regularly for updates related to the IMS network.

Latest Updates from IMS

Meals for Students During Closure

Keep Learning Going

The IMS Academic Team has provided resources to schools for promoting learning during the school closure. Many educational websites (including those that are mobile-phone friendly) are offering free access as a result of the outbreak. Teachers and/or school leaders are communicating with parents/caregivers to share learning plans and additional resources. If you need support in obtaining learning resources, please contact your school’s principal.

While we strongly encourage students to engage in academic work during the school closure, please note that schools have been instructed that students’ grades should not be negatively impacted if they cannot complete these optional assignments.

  • Free video-based lessons: Great Minds, the publisher of our mathematics curriculum materials, Eureka Math – as well as other curriculum programs in reading/ELA and science – is now offering free video-based lessons that are taught by experienced teachers. These resources, including free PDF copies of student workbooks, can be found here. Continue to stay in touch with your school’s teachers and leaders on whether and how to utilize these resources.
  • Free internet for 60 days: Families without internet can participate in the Comcast Internet Essentials program. The program cost is FREE for 60 days.

What Families Need to Know

  • If your child is sick or has a fever, please do not send them to school until they are fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medicines – including Tylenol or Ibuprofen.
  • Inform your school’s leadership team, including the principal, if your child has been diagnosed with the flu or another contagious disease.
  • Notify the principal if your child is planning to travel internationally.
  • Please encourage frequent hand washing and remind your child to cover coughs or sneezes in their elbow.

How is COVID-19 Spread & What Are the Symptoms?

   

How Can I Help Protect Myself?

  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands
  • If you are sick, stay home until you are fever free for 24-hours
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose or eyes
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick

FAQs

Please click here to read our NEW Frequently Asked Questions for Families.

What is IMS doing to minimize the risk of COVID-19 infection? Due to the quarantine activated for Montgomery County, which has limited our ability to adequately staff our schools, and in an effort to minimize social spread of the Coronavirus COVID-19, we are closing all Independence Mission Schools for an extended period. Schools will be closed Monday, March 16, 2020 through Friday, March 27, 2020. We will follow the recommendations of local, state and national authorities to determine if we are able to re-open on Monday, March 30th, 2020.

Have there been any reported cases in IMS schools?  At this time, there have been no reported cases in the IMS network.

Should my child wear a mask?  According to health professionals and the CDC, at this time it is not necessary to invest in surgical face masks and exam gloves. These items provide an illusion of safety when actually, without proper training, proper hand-washing and other preventive steps, the benefits are minimal.

Can we still travel, for example over spring break?  For the latest updates and advice on travel please refer to the CDC’s page.

Will we be notified if someone at school contracts COVID-19?  Families and communities will be notified in accordance with the Philadelphia Department of Health and the CDC if a confirmed case of the new coronavirus is identified in our city or schools.

Resources

 

We will continue to monitor information from the Center for Disease Control and work closely with both the Office of Emergency Management for the City of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health to stay up to date on this evolving situation. We will keep you informed as our preparedness planning progresses.

Last modified: March 30, 2020