Lovett Coronavirus Communications

The Lovett School has convened a cross-functional group to coordinate the school’s planning and response to the evolving novel coronavirus pandemic. Active preventive measures have been put into place with the health and safety of our entire community in mind, and updates to our community are ongoing.

Lovett continues to observe CDC recommendations and guidelines regarding novel coronavirus. The school is also monitoring state and federal emergency management agencies as well as the public health resources below.

School Communications to Parents:

List of 10 items.

  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 5/23/20


    May 23, 2020
     
    Dear Lovett Community:
     
    Because we are committed to helping the Lovett community stay healthy, we want to let you know that the school has been notified by several Class of 2020 families that their students have tested positive for COVID-19. Unfortunately the infectious nature of the COVID-19 virus means that most communities will be touched at some point, and we recognize how hard separation and missed milestones have been on the emotional lives of our students. Families of the students diagnosed with COVID-19 are working with the appropriate healthcare professionals and Departments of Health.
     
    Per the Georgia Department of Public Health, if you experience symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, muscle pain, or loss of taste or smell) or believe you have been exposed to the coronavirus, please contact your primary care provider or an urgent care clinic. Keep in mind that you should not arrive at a healthcare facility or emergency room unannounced. The dedicated COVID-19 Hotline number is: (844) 442-2681.
     
    To minimize the community spread of COVID-19 and protect the individuals most vulnerable, we recommend that you follow CDC guidelines to stay healthy, monitor for symptoms daily, and seek appropriate viral PCR testing if your child or family was exposed to the virus. 
     
    Complimentary testing for COVID-19 (with or without symptoms) in the state of Georgia is available by appointment at designated locations. Please refer to the DPH website or contact CVS for a location convenient to you for an appointment time and to obtain a testing number.
     
    If you have any questions, or to report test results, please contact Shana Horan in the Lovett Health Center at shana.horan@lovett.org or 404-262-3032 ext. 1242. Thank you for your cooperation as we continue our efforts to keep the Lovett community safe and informed to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
     
    Kind regards,
     
    Meredyth Cole
    Head of School
     
    Shana Horan
    Head Nurse
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 4/13/20

    Dear Lovett Community:
     
    We never imagined we would be writing to say that we will not return to on-campus learning this spring. It will likely come as no surprise, though, that Lovett will officially finish out the 2019-2020 school year via virtual learning. We know many of you join in our heartache and disappointment at having to make this announcement, not to mention our collective grief and concern over the tragic toll that the coronavirus pandemic has taken on so many lives both near and far. 

    Since this course became clear, we have turned our attention to sorting out year-end details at the division level as well as schoolwide. Included in this communication are relevant year-end updates related to annual events and activities, including whether they will be postponed, canceled or moved to a virtual format. There will be more details to share as our planning continues. 

    Schedule: The school year will end as planned on Wednesday, May 20 for grades K-11 and Friday, May 8 for seniors. Plans are underway for virtual transition and recognition ceremonies in the Lower and Middle Schools. Graduation events for the class of 2020 will not be virtual. Rather, we are looking at early August to celebrate our graduates with our traditional graduation events (dates TBD) and extra fanfare for this extraordinary group. Please click here for specific details for Upper School events, including senior class updates, here for Middle School details and here for Lower School details. Our time-honored closing chapel service will be held virtually as scheduled on May 8. Year-end activities and traditions play an important role in the lives of students and faculty; please be assured that all three divisions are giving great thought to activities that can or should go virtual, what is best re-created for the fall, and additional events and processes that will support student transitions upon our return to campus. 

    Standardized testing: The College Board has reconfigured Advanced Placement (AP) tests to be conducted virtually, pushing back the testing dates by one week to May 11-22. For Lower and Middle School students, Lovett, like many other schools, has made the decision to forego ERB testing this spring due to challenges and inconsistencies with the organization’s virtual-testing model. For questions regarding standardized tests, please contact Chelle Wabrek, Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs. Division heads will be in touch with more details.

    Fee refunds: We will be refunding fees that fall outside of tuition for a number of spring and summer activities. These reimbursements will be for programs that were canceled, including Afternoon Enrichment programing, trips, bus service, athletic fees, and summer camps. Once an online system has been designed to process reimbursements, we will share it with parents. 

    Summer camps, summer school, and athletic training: With the recent extension of the statewide shelter-in-place order, the Summer Programs team and Athletic Department are preparing for the possibility of a closed campus this summer. Summer school courses will be designed for virtual delivery, and we are looking to increase enrichment offerings for the benefit of our community. Interactive virtual camps are being developed, and revised schedules are being considered. Fall coaches will plan to connect with their athletes remotely until able to safely return to campus. The goal of our planning is to stay fluid in order to shift back to on-campus programming as soon as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, please be on the lookout for updates.

    We recognize that you may have other questions and concerns and would like to invite you to join Meredyth and our Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs, Chelle Wabrek, for a webinar discussion tomorrow, Tuesday, April 14 at either 3:00 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. (parents, please check your email for login information). 

    Thank you to everyone - students, faculty, staff, and parents - who have adjusted so quickly and with such grace and patience through these unprecedented times.  We are so proud of how the Lovett community has remained positive and connected even though we are physically apart. Stay safe and please be well.


    Sincerely,

    Meredyth Cole, Head of School

    Reid French, Chairman, Lovett Board of Trustees
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/24/20

    Dear Lovett Community:

    I cannot begin to express how proud and humbled I am by the spirit, grace and can-do attitude of the Lovett community! As we enter this second and unprecedented week of virtual learning, I want to share my deepest thanks for your ongoing support and partnership.

    The coronavirus pandemic continues to be a quickly-evolving situation, and recent measures at the state and local level have had a definite impact on our schedule for the coming weeks. Lovett’s administration and Board want to remain nimble by reevaluating campus closure biweekly. In keeping with Mayor Bottoms’ announcement regarding a two-week stay-at-home order, we will continue with our virtual learning program through April 7. Our faculty will continue to plan their learning progressions in four-week increments to ensure stable curricular alignment. We know that this is difficult news; it is for all of us. On our end, we miss our colleagues, we miss routine, and most of all: we miss the kids.

    In light of this extension, our teachers need some time to transform their curricular planning to support students via distance learning over a longer-term period. To ensure we continue to provide an excellent learning experience, we will have a faculty work day on Friday, April 3. No classes will be held.

    As we move further into this brave new world of virtual learning, we thought it would be helpful to host a brief webinar tomorrow (Wednesday) at 7:30 p.m. Assistant Head of School Chelle Wabrek and I will share our reflections on the shift to virtual learning and the challenges ahead. This webinar will be followed by division head webinars later this week that will be more tailored to discussions around their specific grade levels.

    Recognizing that this is a time when we need each other more than ever, the chaplains have created a form that anyone in the Lovett community can use to request a prayer and/or a phone call from them (this form is also accessible via the “Spiritual Life” section on our website). Our chaplains are standing by to be resources and to minister to the entire Lovett community. 

    I’m a firm believer in an old saying that is certainly more than relevant these days: “Pray for the best, prepare for the worst.” I think it’s vital to pray for the best in the future but also celebrate the best of our current conditions. For so many - students, employees, alumni, families - the ties that bind all of us to Lovett are critically important, comforting and sustaining right now. In other words, the best of the best. For that, I am truly grateful. 

    Sincerely,

    Meredyth Cole
    Head of School
     
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/19/20

    Dear Lovett Parents:

    Greetings from a strangely quiet yet very busy school! I can honestly say that this has been one of the most challenging and inspiring weeks of my career. Leading, managing and planning through the unknown, connecting and collaborating virtually, and establishing new personal and professional patterns has been both energizing and complicated. I suspect most of you are feeling similarly. 

    Thank you to all who have shared reports from the first two days of remote learning, both the good and the challenging! This first week is about setting up routines, expectations, and processes for communicating. In many ways, it feels like the first week of a new school year. That said, even as we are knee-deep in the logistics of this new and current reality, we cannot and will not lose the importance of connection. Seeing each other - and being seen - remains at the heart of what we do here at Lovett, even if it is done virtually for the time being. 

    In addition to staying connected, staying engaged is important. Even the youngest amongst us need a purpose - a “job.” For our students, that is attending to learning, making sure they are taking care of themselves with physical activity and screen breaks, and contributing at home. Here at Lovett, we are working hard at the important job of continuing to advance all our curriculums. 

    Next week, it may feel like we start to shift from a sprint to a marathon. As we make that transition, please be sure to check out and utilize all the great resources on MyLion. Our chaplains and counselors have added great content that you and your children may find helpful and comforting.  My new favorite expression is, “Distance makes the heart grow fonder.” I have loved seeing so many students in classes and “hang-outs.” I appreciate all of your messages, your words of encouragement, your suggestions, and especially your good humor.

    Take care and stay healthy-

    Meredyth
  • Run 'n Lovett Postponed

    Run 'n Lovett, originally scheduled for April 25, 2020, is postponed.  
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/15/20

    Hello, Lovett families!

    I hope this message finds you well and successfully navigating these unchartered waters.

    In anticipation of the week ahead, I wanted to take a minute to express my gratitude for the support and partnership you all are extending. Thank you. I am so impressed and proud of the flexibility, innovation collaboration, creativity and ingenuity our faculty are exhibiting as we dive into a new way of doing things. As I made my way around campus on Friday, spirits were so high, it was a beautiful day out, but —-I also think we were all taking advantage of those last in-person connections for a while.

    I could not help thinking about the kindergarteners who tomorrow morning might not understand why they are not headed to campus, and my heart hurts for the Class of 2020 who is wondering how their senior year will play out. I assured them we are canceling nothing at this point!

    As we make the shift to a remote learning platform and support services, we all need to do so with patience, understanding and an attitude of good intentions. There will no doubt be hiccups, internet outages, dropped connections, lots of questions and likely illness with which to contend. And we will all face it with as much patience and grace as we can. Our faculty are committed to bringing their personal best to your children. I ask that you extend them grace and support as they transition to this new platform, and I ask that they do the same for your children.

    As my college-age daughter, who is at home (reluctantly so), begins preparing for online classes, she reminded me that I am NOT invited into her classroom with her. It was a good reminder for me that as parents, we need to create an at-home learning environment with the level of independence that our kids are used to at school. 

    Division heads, department chairs, and faculty are all preparing and planning with best practices in blended learning in mind. The goal is not to recreate a carbon copy of in person learning but to ensure learning outcomes remain as consistent as possible. Some of the differences you will notice are:
    • what feels like a shortened academic day
    • adjustments in assessments
    • a wider variety of ways students will participate in “discussion” 
    • increased student agency and its accompanying responsibility
    Being apart from one another is not going to be easy for this community; walking an empty campus on Friday night was an odd experience. We all value community, we all value a sense of belonging, and we all need to think about how we care for that sense of community and maintain that sense of belonging while we are physically apart. This community is resilient, and I have no doubt that we will come back together stronger. 

    As I shared with the faculty, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and Lovett has a huge heart! Our counselors, chaplains, your students’ advisors and learning specialists remain engaged and here for support. Please don’t hesitate to reach out and use these resources. Parent information sessions are being planned, so watch your email for those sign-ups and how-to’s. Staying in touch with you all and keeping you informed is a priority for me and my team.

    Starting this week, our campus and its facilities are closed as we’ll have a skeleton crew in place. Division heads will be in touch with information specific to individual divisions, and you can expect to hear from me with updates and words of encouragement as we all contend with the questions and isolation the situation presents. 

    Please remind your US and MS students that they are to participate in systems testing tomorrow between 12:00 - 2:00 p.m. Students have all been informed of how this will work.

    To date, I have not received word of any member of our community testing positive for COVID-19. As hard as it is, please take the CDC’s guidelines to heart and discourage your children and teens from gathering in public places while we are social distancing. 

    Stay healthy everyone, take care of yourselves physically and emotionally, and know that Lovett is here to support you and your children to the best of our ability.

    Meredyth Cole
    Head of School
     
  • Alumni Spring Events Rescheduled

    • 50th & 55th Reunions, originally scheduled for April 3, are postponed to September 11.

    • The Golden Lions Gala, originally scheduled for April 4, has been postponed until September 12. New invitations to be mailed closer to the date.

    • The Rock & Roast and Spring Reunion Weekend, scheduled for April 24-25, has been canceled. Reunions will be rescheduled to Homecoming Weekend, October 2-3
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/12/20

    Dear Lovett Community: 

    We greatly appreciate your patience and flexibility during this time of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While there have been no reported cases within the Lovett community to date, we are mindful of Governor Kemp’s guidance this afternoon that schools consider temporary closure.  We also remain steadfast in our commitment to the continuation of teaching and learning to the children entrusted to us each day.

    Tomorrow will remain a school day on campus with a regular academic schedule for students. After-school activities, including lower school enrichments, athletics, and practices, are canceled. Today the Georgia High School Athletics Association recommended that all member schools suspend spring sports activities until further notice.  Lower school ASAP will remain open tomorrow.

    Monday, March 16 and Tuesday, March 17 will now be faculty workdays. On Monday, Middle School and Upper School students will participate in practice run-throughs of their digital classes between 12:00 and 2:00. Lovett's online courses will then launch officially on Wednesday, March 18. At this time, our plan is to conduct school via online platforms for two weeks (through March 27) and then to reevaluate plans based on public health recommendations available at that time.

    In keeping with new CDC guidelines, we ask that if you have traveled to continental Europe (excluding the UK and Ireland) within the last two weeks, you self-quarantine and not return to school tomorrow.  Please check this link for guidance.

    Shifting to an online learning platform and not coming to campus daily is an adjustment that will require many layers of communication. Division-specific information, how-to’s, schedules, virtual gatherings, and student support systems are just a few of the elements about which we will provide information in the days ahead. If you have not looked over the family checklist to ensure you have the requisite technological capabilities, please do so. A short survey that checks your connectivity helps us sustain continuity for teaching and learning. 

    We are thankful that you continue to extend us grace as we navigate this rapidly changing situation. We are thankful to be members of a community that is committed to supporting one another through turbulent times. Please know our counselors and chaplains are here to support our entire community, particularly our students, in any way they can. I am enormously appreciative of your trust in Lovett as we make our way forward together day by day.

    With gratitude,

    Meredyth Cole
    Head of School
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/8/20

    Dear Lovett Families, Faculty and Staff:

    I wanted to send a quick update to Friday’s email as we look forward to welcoming everyone back to campus tomorrow. Our cross-functional group continues to meet daily and is busy with preparations to get back to the business of teaching and learning at Lovett, and you should hear from your division principal(s) today if you have not done so already.
     
    IMPORTANT: International Travelers
    Please make sure to notify Lovett, VIA THIS FORM, of any travel, over the last three weeks, by any member of your immediate family to the five countries on the CDC’s warning list due to coronavirus: Italy, Japan, South Korea, China and Iran. It is critically important that we have this information for the protection of our entire community.
     
    We continue to observe the CDC guidelines and will follow their lead should this list be expanded. Like many U.S. organizations and in accordance with CDC guidelines, we are requiring that travelers to these countries remain off campus for 14 days following their return to Atlanta. A division head or other administrator will follow up with you immediately if your response indicates that this impacts your family.
     
    Communications from the School
    Moving forward, please know that any urgent information will be disseminated schoolwide via email from me or via our emergency notification system. In addition, the principals will be in frequent contact with you regarding curricular and other specifics that are more divisional in nature. Finally, we will continue to send out the Lion Lowdown on Thursdays with the regular highlights and updates that it usually includes.
     
    Again, thank you for your ongoing support of the school’s initiatives to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our community. We will continue to keep you updated.
     
     
    Meredyth Cole
  • Head of School Coronavirus Update 3/6/20

    Dear Lovett Families, Faculty and Staff:

    We look forward to welcoming everyone back to campus on Monday and hope that your family has enjoyed a restful week. As promised, I am writing with an update on the school’s preparations for and response to the evolving coronavirus outbreak. 
     
    Over the break, we convened a cross-functional group to meet and work daily to address the school’s planning and response. Although we have no knowledge of any active cases of Covid-19 in the Lovett community, we have put the following measures into place out of an abundance of caution and with the health and safety of our entire community in mind:
     
    International Travelers
    While Lovett didn't sponsor any international trips this break, we realize that many have traveled abroad. The school requests that you notify Lovett, VIA THIS FORM, of any travel, over the last three weeks, by any member of your immediate family to the five countries on the CDC’s warning list due to coronavirus: Italy, Japan, South Korea, China and Iran. (Please note that this list may change; we will continue to follow the CDC’s guidance.) Lovett will follow all governmental policies and recommendations regarding home self-monitoring/quarantines, including observing quarantine periods for those who have traveled to the listed regions. Like many U.S. organizations and in accordance with CDC guidelines, we are requiring that travelers to these countries remain off campus for 14 days following their return to Atlanta.

    Please know that the school stands ready and able to provide additional support and/or distance-learning opportunities for students who are not able to return to campus at this time. Numerous employees returned to Lovett during spring break for a half-day workshop to develop ways to virtualize school in developmentally appropriate ways. In conjunction with the technology staff, teachers practiced using the platforms that would allow us to keep students connected to the classroom from afar. The group detailed the obstacles to virtual teaching and learning and began to problem-solve around them so that a Lovett education continues to serve the whole child, even from afar. Employees who need to self-quarantine are expected to work remotely as possible.

    Illness
    The Georgia Department of Education’s special coronavirus guidelines advise that any student who is sick should be kept home from school. The Lovett Parent/Student Handbook defines a sick student as having “ a fever of 100.2 degrees or above, vomiting, diarrhea, persistent pain, or a widespread rash.” If your child or someone in your family is sick with symptoms that could indicate Covid-19 (fever >100.4 F, cough, shortness of breath or flu-like symptoms), the Georgia Department of Public Health’s current instructions are to contact your healthcare provider. 

    Cleaning Protocols
    Cleaning protocols are a critical preventive measure for this or any illness outbreak, and Lovett’s facilities team and janitorial supplier, EcoLabs, have spent the break cleaning, stocking and conducting updated disinfection training. The school will now use, on a daily basis, a disinfectant cleaner that is rated for viral control, particularly focusing on high-touch points such as sink handles, door handles, handrails, and other frequently contacted surfaces throughout the school day across campus. Other measures include:
    • Hand sanitizers have been replaced and restocked throughout campus with a product containing >60% alcohol, per the CDC’s recommendation. 
    • Signage has been installed in each bathroom across campus to remind and instruct staff, faculty, and students to wash their hands properly and frequently. This is still the CDC’s single strongest recommendation at this time. 
    • Hand-held foggers will be used by the janitorial team to efficiently treat localized areas. 
    Large Group Gatherings and Athletics
    As of this writing, there are no CDC recommendations to restrict large gatherings based on the threat level in this area. Additionally, there have been no changes to team schedules or other advisories from the Georgia High School Association (GHSA), Lovett’s athletic conference. If either situation changes, we will notify you immediately.

    Curricular Preparations and Upcoming School Trips
    We will remain in communication with you regarding upcoming school trips.  We are also making plans in case of an extended school cancellation should the situation in Georgia worsen over time. Please contact your child's division principal if you have any specific questions.

    Thank you for your ongoing support of the school’s initiatives to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our community. We will continue to keep you updated.

    Sincerely,

    Meredyth Cole
    Head of School
 
 
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