Dear De La Salle Families,
On Friday, a court ruled against Governor Pritzker’s executive order requiring masks in schools. As you know, De La Salle has been complying with this order because it has applied to all schools in Illinois whether public or private.
The Governor has already indicated he will appeal this ruling, which might lead to its immediate reversal. We are closely monitoring the case, which will likely involve continued litigation. Because future court rulings may go back and forth, and because changing our policies back and forth would create confusion and disruption in our schools, we will continue the current mask policy for now.
Once the case is concluded and a final decision is rendered, we will determine if we are able to make masks optional in our school based on several considerations, including:
-the outcome of the court case and subsequent appeals,
-other public health mandates that may affect our schools, such as local indoor mask requirements, and
-school- and community-level transmission rates at that time.
If these conditions allow, we will make masks optional in our school. All of this could take a little time, so we ask for your patience as we work through all of the issues. We will keep you informed as developments warrant.
A Thank You
We are incredibly grateful that De La Salle has been able to remain open for in-person instruction these past two school years when many others were not. Our success has been due to a dedicated team of teachers, administration, staff, and medical advisors, plus your commitment to Catholic education, plus a smart, comprehensive COVID strategy that has been implemented since the inception of this Global Pandemic.
This has been a fluid situation, with both the virus and our strategies to contain it evolving over time. This school year we are running in ways less restrictive than a year ago. We now celebrate Mass, host athletics, stage music and theater, go on field trips, and retreats. Volunteers and visitors are allowed in the buildings. .
In January we were able to cut isolation and quarantine time periods in half. Importantly, our staff has worked tirelessly to monitor positive cases and to manage them in ways that minimize the risk that others will be infected. While the virus has surged, waned, and surged again in communities, we have seen very little evidence of the virus spreading in our schools because everyone is working hard to keep each other safe.
A court case is not medicine. While we follow the laws that apply to us, our decisions about the health and safety of our students and staff will always be guided by health data and in consultation with doctors and trained public health officials.