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1/10/2022 Monday Message from Dr. Hart-Olivis

Good evening Hillandale families,

This is Dr. Hart-Olivis with this week’s Monday Message.

As we continue to navigate through schooling during the COVID-19 pandemic, please remember to both have your child charge their laptop fully each evening, and be prepared for any possibility of students not returning to their classrooms the next day by ensuring students have their school-issued laptop coming home.  The most important thing to us is that your child is physically and emotionally safe, but your child’s academic growth is still very important to us.

Please keep an eye on the Hillandale website, for a graphic representation of the steps we will take in Durham Public Schools with the most updated COVID-19 guidance regarding quarantine and return to school.  We will also be sharing an additional easy-read graphic about how to report a positive COVID-19 test.

Families, please be reminded that students are required to wear their masks over their noses and mouths unless there is a scheduled mask break or the student has a documented exemption in our school’s office for mask-wearing.  Please stress to your child that this is our first line of defense against transmission in the building in the case of a person in the building testing positive.

Many of our families have chosen to have children tested regularly at the school.  This is one way for us to identify people who have been in the building and not presented symptoms.  This weekly testing is referred to as “pool testing.”  According to the FDA website, pooling samples involves mixing several samples together in a "batch" or pooled sample, then testing the pooled sample with a diagnostic test. This approach increases the number of individuals that can be tested using the same amount of resources. For example, four samples may be tested together, using only the resources needed for a single test. However, because samples are diluted, which could result in less viral genetic material available to detect, there is a greater likelihood of false-negative results, particularly if not properly validated. This method of pooling samples works well when there is a low prevalence of cases, meaning more negative results are expected than positive results.  If you hear from a representative at Hillandale who states that your child was part of a positive pool, a rapid PCR test will help us determine if your child is, in fact, positive for COVID-19.

As we learn more about what the pandemic means for our students and the learning environment, we will continue to transform what we do each day to prepare our students for their future.  Thank you for your patience and understanding as we get there through the unity that makes Hillandale such a special place.

Stay up to date about what’s happening at Hillandale on our school website, and on Twitter and Instagram @HillandalePOWER.

As always, thank you for your support, your partnership, and most of all for being part of The Hillandale Family.  


Have an excellent week!