Parents concerned about Chippewa Hills decisions and procedures

REMUS – Following school closures due to absences and illnesses in several districts, some school authorities are re-examining guidelines for safe school education. On Monday, September 13, the Chippewa Hills School District School Board convened for its monthly meeting and heard several parents voice their concerns about the hiding and the board’s decision-making.

During the public comment portion of the meeting, a parent who resides in Barryton, John Farrell, expressed concern over the council’s decisions regarding quarantine procedures, illness and masking within the school community.

“The board needs to vote on the policy and procedures it wants to see in place,” said Farrell. “Letting one person make all the decisions is a lot for that person, and it affects the students. Who is monitoring the current quarantine schedule, and where is the evidence and the evidence? We currently have about sixty children out of school, do their teachers and superintendents watch them and count the minutes? No, this is random discrimination and it is unacceptable.

“The guidelines that you have laid out make no sense, and these are decisions that are not made properly,” he added. “The board did not vote on adopting procedures, and we need to know where you stand as a member and not just as a person. Tell me where the information came from that proves the mask policy works, and you won’t find it. There are so many other things that are of interest to community members, from jobs to volunteering, and people are expressing great concern about it because of some of the draconian efforts and things that are being put in place.

“I made a public statement on Facebook and I am appealing to the board right now; and if the board does not want to act, we are ready as a community to withdraw you. I am not saying this as a threat, I am saying it as a member of the community to my friends. I say you fail, but prove me wrong.

Currently, the Chippewa Hills School District does not require masks to be worn in its buildings and does not require vaccination of students or staff. No COVID-19 testing is planned, but the school will continue to follow MHSAA guidelines and best practices to ensure athletes can participate.

According to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention’s COVID-19 Data Tracker, as of September 15, Mecosta County, which includes the Chippewa Hills School District, had 100 new positive cases and 10 new hospital admissions from 6-12. September. with only 38.9% of the eligible population vaccinated.

Data released from the Chippewa Hills School District indicates that a September 14 District Health Department report shows five confirmed or probable cases in the district, including two in middle and high school and one registered in Mecosta primary school. The district has had 176 quarantines to date.

Another parent who attended the board meeting, Sara Duncan, expressed frustration with her children returning to school due to confusion over regulations regarding quarantine times and testing for unvaccinated students with COVID-19 antibodies. Duncan has four children in the school district.

“My kids haven’t had any symptoms the entire time, and one of my sons has IgG immunity, but we were asked to prove the Oakley vaccination so he could go back to school,” said Duncan. “I have been informed that they do not recognize antibody immunity at this time, and I have not found any evidence to support the need for further quarantine. I’m not trying to be picky, I’m trying to be a responsible parent and citizen, but at some point our children’s education has to become a priority.

“I am in no way trying to downplay the severity of COVID 19 and ask you to come up with some sort of workable plan for our children that includes case-by-case logic and reasoning,” she added. “The education and health of our children is of the utmost importance, whatever your views on immunization, there should be a system in place that allows healthy children to receive in-person education. Requiring that children be vaccinated to stay in school and not in quarantine makes no logical or medical sense. “

Antibodies are detected in the blood of people who have already been infected or vaccinated against a virus that causes disease and show the body’s efforts or readiness to fight a specific virus. According to the CDC, antibody tests generally should not be used to diagnose the current infection. An antibody test may not show if you have a current infection because it can take up to weeks after infection for your body to make antibodies. Antibody tests are currently not recommended to assess immunity to COVID-19 after vaccination.

The CDC says most people who test positive with an antibody test can continue with normal activities, including work, but still need to take steps to protect themselves and others, including getting vaccinated. The organization also says antibody test results should not be used to determine whether someone can return to work or school, and test results should not be used to group people into groups. environments such as schools, dormitories, and correctional facilities, or to exempt someone from testing.


Chippewa Hills Superintendent Bob Grover said the administration is monitoring the return to in-person learning and continues to tailor advice provided to the community with the most recent and accurate health data.

“I’m optimistic that we won’t have to go virtual, but we have been in contact with several lawmakers to resolve attendance issues in regards to funding and what should happen,” Grover said. . “If we are able to serve our kids at 70% in-person attendance, let’s continue to do so and try to improve and get the kids back. We will continue to try to get answers, and hopefully we have something to fix the problem.

“The climate is positive despite all the other problems that impact our daily life,” he added. “Our staff have been able to provide quality education, and we will continue to work to ensure that this type of education persists. We need a better idea of ​​what the state is going to demand and what the health services are saying to move forward, but I cannot issue official orders. Recently, ISD superintendents met to discuss data and consider protocol changes, which was helpful in sharing information. “

Chippewa Hills board chairman Guy Stickler said the administration will continue to process and adjust quarantine protocols and health measures based on health advice, number of cases and level community risk.

The next Chippewa Hills School District Education Council meeting is scheduled for October 11 at 6 p.m. at Weidman Elementary School at 311 School Road.

For more information on the Chippewa Hills School District School Board and COVID-19 updates, visit the district’s website at

Other measures discussed by the board:

  • Approval of proposed staff recommendations
  • Approval of the minutes of the August 9 meeting
  • Approval of payments (check and electronic) in the amount of $ 1,812,523.10
  • Monthly check register
  • August monthly income, expenditure and food services income statement

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