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End of the Year Events

posted Apr 16, 2021, 1:08 PM by Kurt Dronebarger
Dear Parents,
As you know, White County Schools have attempted all year to follow the health and safety guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and the TN Department of Health concerning COVID-19. This has allowed us to be in school, in-person all year while some systems never returned to school. Currently, although our community is seeing improvement in the number of COVID-related cases, there has been no change in the CDC/TDH position on public gatherings. Therefore, the decision to restrict end-of-the-year events has been made. 

High school seniors will be holding their award ceremony without visitors and will be live-streaming the event for parents to see. With that in mind, the rest of the district schools have chosen to follow suit. Individual schools are responsible for sharing information concerning their unique events. High school graduation will take place in-person but with many restrictions in place. This event is calculated risk itself, but it is the culminating achievement of an academic career, and for that reason, it is the one which we will strive to provide in-person. 

This year, our school system has also followed the TSSAA guidelines for sporting events. However, at these games, we have witnessed the lack of cooperation by many of our visitors who would not wear masks and did not social distance. Our schools also have constraints of time, space, and logistics which would make these in-person events nearly impossible to have and control. These are just some of the many reasons why administrators have chosen to restrict end-of-the-year events. 

I know that this is disappointing news, and that COVID has been unfair to all of us in some form or fashion. I too, share in your disappointment. Personally, I did not get to see my oldest child graduate from college, and I think we can all agree that is a pretty big accomplishment. But ultimately, we have achieved our goal of being in school all year and our students will be better off in the long run because of the sacrifices we have made along the way. 

I would love nothing more than to say "off with the masks and come on in", but sadly, we are not there yet. I do look forward to those days, but in the meantime, White County Schools will continue to follow the suggested safety guidelines until advised otherwise. I do hope you understand and I wish your family health and wellness as we complete the school year. 

Kurt Dronebarger
Director of Schools