COVID-19 Update - 5/17/21

posted by Brad VanDyne

Good Evening, Loon Lake Families,

I wanted to take a couple minutes this evening to talk about the events of the last few days.  Obviously, based on how many times I have blown up your phone, we have seen an increase in positive cases at our school.  In fact, we had another one yesterday, and close contacts have already been contacted personally.  But why do we keep getting positive cases?  And how do we determine who is a close contact?  

These are great questions.  The answer to the first question is fairly straightforward.  We are seeing more positive cases because COVID is in our community.  And when it’s prevalent in the community, it’s hard to keep it out of the school.  

But what about the second question:  What is going on with determining close contacts?  All year long, we have followed the health and safety guidance of the Department of Health to the letter.  This has not changed.  We take every precaution we can and take health and safety very seriously.  The most recent guidance from the Department of Health says that 3 feet of distance must be maintained at school.  However, the DOH still uses 6 feet of distance to determine close contacts.    

In other words, the guidance says we can be within 3 feet of each other, but if someone is closer than 6 feet to someone who is positive for 15 or more minutes within a day, they are deemed to be a close contact.  Essentially, we can play by the rules, but if an unexpected positive case enters the school, close contacts will still occur.  This is what we see happening.  And thankfully, we have not yet seen cases being spread around our school.  

The other question that may be on people’s minds is whether we are going to have to shut down again.  The answer to that is, I hope not.  There is no magic formula to know when to shut down.  While we have seen a few positive cases, and we have some folks out because they are close contacts, we have a lot more kids still here at school every day.  These are not easy decisions.  We are monitoring the situation closely, with the help of NE Tri County Health District, and will make the best decisions we can in the coming days and weeks.  

And one last side note, we are able to offer COVID testing here at school using a cheek swab.  Any one in our community who wants a test can come and get tested free of charge.  Call us if you are interested in learning more.  

Feel free to call or email me directly with any questions or concerns you may have.  We will get through this crazy school year just like we always do, and that is together.  

Take good care, and we’ll talk again soon.

Positive Cases at Loon Lake Elementary - 5/15/21

posted May 15, 2021, 10:19 AM by Brad VanDyne

Hello Loon Lake Families,

We had 2 children from the same family test positive for COVID-19.  Both of these kids were exposed outside of school.  Any close contacts will be notified personally.  

If you have any questions, please let us know.  Thank you, and have a great weekend!

Positive Case at Loon Lake Elementary - 5/13/21

posted May 13, 2021, 3:45 PM by Brad VanDyne

Loon Lake Families,

We have been informed that another person at our school has tested positive for COVID-19.  Just like our other cases, this one does not appear to have been contracted at school.  If any close contacts are identified, they will be notified personally.    

Thanks, and take good care - 

Positive Case at Loon Lake Elementary - 5/12/21

posted May 12, 2021, 9:41 AM by Brad VanDyne

Loon Lake Families,

We have been informed that one of our students has tested positive for COVID-19.  Just like our other cases, this one does not appear to have been contracted at school.  If any close contacts are identified, they will be notified personally.    

Also, on Monday, May 24th, we will be having a late start to hold a teacher training.  School starts at 11:00 and all buses will run 2 hours later than their usual time.  I will send out another reminder as May 24th gets closer.

Thanks so much, and take good care!    

March 19, 2021 Update

posted Mar 19, 2021, 3:42 PM by Brad VanDyne

Loon Lake Families, 

I hope this message finds your family healthy and well.  Just a quick message today with a few updates.    

First, I want to start by saying thank you.  We have had our kids back in the building for quite some time now, and I can’t begin to tell you awesome it is to have them here.  They are doing such a great job.  Thanks to you, our families, for your flexibility and support, and thank you to our staff for working so hard to maintain all safety protocols and keep our kids as safe as possible. 

Also, quick side note – You may have heard that today the CDC has changed the 6 feet of distance rule down to 3 feet.  At the time of recording this message, our guidance from Washington State’s Department of Health, which is what all schools must follow, hasn’t changed their guidance from 6 feet yet.  We will keep you posted as we learn more. 

Lastly, a quick note about our calendar.  If you have a calendar that says we have a late start on Monday, please ignore this.  We do not have a late start on Monday.  However, we do have an early release at 12:30 on Friday.  So, no late start Monday, but an early release at 12:30 on Friday, March 26th.   

We are looking forward to seeing you all at conferences on April 1st and 2nd, and hope you all have a wonderful spring break! 

Take good care and we’ll talk to you soon.


Positive Case at Loon Lake Elementary - 12/14/20

posted Dec 14, 2020, 5:38 PM by Brad VanDyne

Good Evening, Loon Lake Families,

We were informed today that one of our students has tested positive for COVID-19.  Just like our other cases, this one does not appear to have been contracted at school.  Also, no close contacts have been identified because the student was not in close proximity with anyone when they may have been contagious.  If any close contacts are identified, they will be notified personally.  

As always, there is a notification letter on our website and school Facebook page about this as well.  

If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to let us know.  

Take care and stay well.  Have a good night.  


Positive COVID Cases at Loon Lake Elementary - 12/9/2020

posted Dec 9, 2020, 5:39 PM by Brad VanDyne   [ updated Dec 9, 2020, 5:41 PM ]

Hello Loon Lake Families,

As I am sure that you have heard in the news, the numbers of COVID-19 cases are increasing everywhere, and here at Loon Lake, we are not immune to these increases.
Today we received information that two of our students, who are the members of the same family, have tested positive.  We do not believe these positive cases were contracted at school, and because of the timeframe, neither of these students were at school when possibly contagious.  If there are any close contacts, they will be notified individually.  

There is a notification letter on our website and our school Facebook page about this as well.  

Thank you and have a good night,

Positive COVID Case at Loon Lake Elementary - 11/24/20

posted Nov 24, 2020, 9:00 AM by Brad VanDyne

Good Morning, Loon Lake Families, 

As they say, "All good things must come to an end." We had a great run of having no known COVID-19 cases in our school. How quickly things change. 

One of our staff members at Loon Lake Elementary School has tested positive. It has been determined that she acquired it from outside of the school.  Her diligence in distancing and voluntarily quarantining before she was asked prevented any risk to our other staff and students. 

A letter from NE Tri County Health with more information is posted on our website and our Loon Lake Facebook page.

Happy Thanksgiving and take good care – 

November 19, 2020 - Conferences/Early Release/COVID Update

posted Nov 19, 2020, 2:20 PM by Brad VanDyne

Hello Loon Lake Families,

Brad here from the school.  It’s been a while since I bugged you with an update, so I figured it was time.  Just three items for today.

First, remember that we have conferences on Monday and Tuesday of next week.  Please plan on arriving about 10 minutes early so we can do your health screening.  When you get here, you will head straight to the gym to be screened.  

Second, because we have conferences next week, we have our typical early release tomorrow so our teachers can prepare their report cards.  This only affects our students currently coming in for full days, which for tomorrow only includes our 4th grade green group and our full day special education students.  

And finally, as you may have heard, we are increasing the time kids spend at school starting after Thanksgiving break.  Your child’s teacher will reach out to you with specifics, if they haven’t done so already.  

I know there are questions swirling around in many communities right now about schools.  Are schools going to be shut down again?  Right now, the answer is no.  The governor has said he wants shut down decisions to be made locally.  Our health district, NE Tri County Health, also supports local school districts making these kinds of decisions.  So at this point, I don’t see any kind of forced shutdown happening.  

So this begs another question, if COVID is more prevalent now than it was in March, why did we close then, but are staying open now?  I think it’s important to know that last March, nobody knew anything about COVID.  We know a lot more now.  

Schools have been in session for a while now, including us.  The data is showing that if schools follow safety protocols, the virus is not spreading within schools and schools are not contributing to community spread.  This is very encouraging, and that’s why we can stay open now.

We all wear our masks, we stay 6 feet apart, we wash our hands, and we disinfect regularly.  We take these protocols very seriously.  It doesn’t mean we are immune or that positive cases can’t happen here, but this is where our kids should be.  

Speaking of staying safe, I want to thank you all.  At of the time of this message, we have not had any positive cases in our school (knock on wood).  When your family follows safety protocols when you go out in public, it helps keep your family healthy, which helps keep our school healthy.  Clearly, you are working hard at this.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.  

I wish you all a happy Thanksgiving, and I’ll see many of you next week at conferences.

Take care – 

Friday, November 13th - No School Due to Weather

posted Nov 13, 2020, 5:38 AM by Brad VanDyne

Loon Lake School District is closed today, Friday, November 13th, due to weather conditions.  This means our elementary is closed and our home-link is closed.  There will be no Loon Lake buses running to neighboring districts.  There will also be no food or work delivery today from the Loon Lake van.  

Loon Lake Elementary students are NOT required to log in to their computers today.  Instead, play outside and make a snowman or two.      

Stay safe out there and have a great day.  

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