COVID-19 & Related Updates
March 30, 2020
We are so fortunate that Fr. Twenty was able to join the Marian community together in Mass this morning.
March 27, 2020
Messages from Fr. 20
First: Yet again our Holy Father is asking us to join him in prayer the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic.
In this unique event, Pope Francis will be bestowing his Papal blessing called “Urbi et Orbi” (latin for “to the city [Rome] and the world”). Historically this particular blessing has only occurred on three occasions: 1) at the Pope’s inauguration, 2) Christmas, and 3) Easter.
To join the faithful all around the world united in prayer with the Successor of St. Peter, tune in to this live stream event at Noon today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3uQJsO6bxk
Want to learn more about the Urbi et Orbi blessing and the plenary indulgence attached to it? Check out this article: https://aleteia.org/2020/03/26/why-the-popes-blessing-on-march-27-will-be-absolutely-unique/
Second: tune in to the Marian Central Facebook page at 2pm for a live video from Fr. 20!
March 26, 2020
IHSA - From Craig Anderson, Executive Director of IHSA
I know this time continues to be a challenge for all of us. I hope this note finds you well.
As the IHSA staff and board continue to monitor the updates from government offices as well as state and local health departments, we continue to support the possibility of our member schools completing both regular and post spring sports seasons. The date schools can return to regular session will determine the length of the spring sports season and the potential of an IHSA State Series. We will be working with our Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC) to determine the need for an acclimatization period in advance of competition. No timeline has been set at this time.
We are considering an extension of the spring sports season limitation to provide more participation opportunities for students. This may include movement of the post season timelines and the state series.
We will continue to provide updates as new information is available. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
Invest in Kids Act: Application Review and Scholarship Awarding Resumed
We are happy to confirm that on Monday, March 23, Empower Illinois resumed application review and scholarship awarding as normal. We recognize families may still be facing some roadblocks due to COVID-19. Therefore, we have also extended the acceptance deadline for anyone with an open Conditional Award to May 1, 2020, to accommodate families who may have limited access to a computer during this time.
If families have questions about their application or awards status, please direct them to our Scholars Helpline (309)-416-0741, scho
March 24 ,2020
We Pray Together
March 23, 2020
Update from the Diocese of Rockford
As many of you already know, this past Saturday, March 21, 2020, Governor Pritzker announced the closure of all Illinois schools until at least April 7. The announcement came as the governor issued a statewide stay-at-home order. All schools in the Rockford Diocese will comply with this date and anticipate continuing to utilize e-Learning/Distance Learning after Spring Break.
At this time, we just don't know for sure when we will be returning to school and we probably won't know anything definite until the first week in April. In the meantime, our faculty will continue to receive additional resources and training in an effort to develop and deliver E-Learning lesson for a longer closure.
From McHenry County Health Department (MCHD)
As of March 21, 2020, MCHD communicated that students and staff with mild respiratory illness are advised to STAY HOME; testing is not indicated for mildly ill or asymptomatic persons. Students and staff should consult with their health care provider if they have:
- Fever, cough, trouble breathing, or other flu-like symptoms that are not better or are worsening after 24-48 hours
- Mild symptoms and are immunosuppressed or are an older adult with chronic health conditions
MCHD asks that students and staff do not call them about getting testing. MCDH is not performing testing at any of their locations. Health care providers will determine if someone should be tested and will call the MCDH if needed.
All household contacts to a (confirmed or possible) case of COVID-19 should stay home and watch for symptoms for 7 days after the case has been afebrile and feeling well and for a minimum of 14 days (this means that household contacts may need to remain at home longer than the initial case).
Resources for Our Catholic Family
- To assist Catholics everywhere, the FORMED platform will be provided free to everyone for the next 40 days. Sign up today and get immediate access to the best Catholic movies, faith formation videos, audio talks, and great children’s videos. Click here to access FORMED and connect with your faith via iOS, Android, desktop, connected TV (TVOS and ROKU) or XBOX.
- Catholic Online School, is offering to all who are unable to go to Holy Mass, the readings for each day. You can access both the readings and the reflections by clicking here:
Please first enroll in Catholic Online School and then enroll in the Daily Readings for March!
March 20, 2020
E-Learning & Attendance Update - From the Diocese of Rockford Education Office
Recently, many of our school administrators and teachers have received questions from school parents regarding the decision to continue e-Learning and grading e-Learning assignments. Governor Pritzker’s executive order required all school (public/nonpublic) to close from March 17 until March 30. These days have been declared as “Act of God” days and not instructional days. These days will not be required to be made up.
The state has been very clear in suggesting students should participate in enrichment activities through e-Learning plans. We realize the Illinois State Board of Education has stated that e-Learning assignments should not be graded and should be used as enrichment activities only. The Catholic Education Office has established its guidelines for our Diocesan schools including how these “Act of God” days will be handled. Our guidelines have been developed with the students’ best interests in mind.
To keep our students engaged and moving our schools’ curriculum forward, the decision was reached that our students would be engaging in e-Learning during this mandatory school closure and not just “busy work.” These e-Learning assignments will be graded and student attendance will be recorded as present or as virtual learning days.
Everyone needs to understand that e-Learning is very different than classroom instructional time and different strategies are used to engage students in learning. E-Learning is not designed to fill the entire day but it is designed to engage students in learning and helping to prepare our students for the next grade level. E-Learning is developed specifically for learning that takes place outside the regular classroom. It should be rigorous as it can be and at the same time, teachers understand that it requires a delicate balance of providing just the right amount of student engagement. Teachers vary their lessons from independent self-paced learning to teacher lead electronic instruction. Depending on the Internet availability in the home, some schools are providing student packets as a means of instruction. Everyone must follow the IDPH guidelines of not allowing groups of 10 or more to group together and even then they must practice social distancing.
Our goal is to support our school administrators, faculties, students, and parents as we maneuver through this very difficult period and continue to prepare our students for the next step in their educational journey.
We appreciate your patience and understanding and will continue to keep you all in our prayers. We ask that you pray for us as well.
Mike Kagan Vito C. DeFrisco Elizabeth Heitkamp
Superintendent Assistant Superintendent Assistant Superintendent
AP Testing Update - As of March 20, 2020, the College Board has decided that face-to-face AP testing will not take place this May 2020. Instead, they are working to determine the process and dates in which students will be able to take their AP tests online from their homes. Please click here to find out more information and stay updated on what continued decisions the College Board will be taking. We suggest that students communicate with their AP teacher(s) to make sure that they are clear on how to best prepare before taking their exams.
March 18, 2020
Marian Central continues to meet weekly with McHenry County Department of Health (MCDH). The news from this Tuesday’s meeting centered on the lack of tests (for the coronavirus) available to the public. Currently, those who meet the criterion (over 60 years of age with other health issues) will be the ones who first receive the tests. The MCDH and other agencies are working very hard to obtain more desperately needed tests. In regard to schools, it is still very important, even though we are doing e- learning, for our parents to inform the attendance line if their child is sick and describe their symptoms. The health department still is in need of this information even while e-learning is taking place.
Below are some of the highlights from the Bishop of Rockford, the Most Reverend David Malloy’s recent letter, which we are including.
- The announcement of the suspension of public Masses until at least Saturday April 4 and this date is only advisory at this time.
- This decision, as well as the decision to close schools, comes from the recent guidance of the Federal Government and from the State of Illinois for the limiting of public gatherings to reduce the opportunity for contracting and the spreading of the coronavirus.
- Please keep in mind that Marian Central will be closed through the March 31st. However, this date will be evaluated, as we get closer to the 31st.
- Marian’s school office will now be closed. However, we will all be working from home. If you need us just send us an email. Please continue to call into the attendance line when needed.
While many of us Catholics will hurt from not receiving the Eucharist, as the Bishop has indicated, we can still pray. Let us all take his advice and pray daily. There is so much to pray for at this time. Let us remember the words of Saint Teresa of Calcutta, “We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.” We all have the power to love and pray for those around us and maybe at this time, that is what is most needed.
March 13, 2020
Dear School Administrators, Staff & School Families,
Bishop Malloy has approved the following directives for dissemination by the Catholic Education Office:
- Beginning on Monday, March 16, classes at all Diocesan elementary and high school facilities are to be
suspended until at least March 30, at which time the situation will be re-evaluated, and further directives will be provided. During this time period, however, schools are expected to put into place e-Learning/distant
- The suspension of on-site classes also includes ALL athletic, extra-curricular, and co-curricular activities both on and off-site. The suspension of these athletic, extra-curricular, and co-curricular activities is to begin
immediately and will be re-evaluated at the same time the school situation is re-evaluated.
Administrators, we recommend that during the next two weeks that you direct your school or parish maintenance staff to do a deep cleaning of your school facility and that you also limit access to your building.
Families & staff, we ask that if anyone is planning on traveling outside the continental United States during the upcoming spring break that you inform your school administrator and place yourself on a 14-day self-quarantine when you return. This is important because you will not be allowed to return to school until that period of time has elapsed. And the quarantine period begins the day you return from the trip.
Because this is an ever-evolving situation, there may be more information and directives that will be communicated to you through School Speak, parishes, social media, and the diocesan website. Also, please check your e-mail regularly.
Let us pray for all those who have been affected by the Coronavirus, both directly and indirectly, and to an end to this outbreak.
Thank you for your cooperation in helping to manage this current pandemic.
God bless you all,
The Staff of the Catholic Education Office
March 6, 2020
Dear Parents/Guardians and Staff,
As you are aware, cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) have been prominent in the news over the last several weeks. In the most up to date information we have from the McHenry County Department of Health, the risk continues to remain low for COVID-19 in McHenry County. Marian Central would like to ensure our families that we will keep in close contact with the McHenry County Department of Health, the Center for Disease Control, the Illinois Department of Public Health (links to these websites are below), and the Diocese of Rockford and follow any recommendations they have regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19).
McHenry County Department of Health https://www.mchenrycountyil.gov/home/showdocument?id=96707
Center for Disease Control https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
Illinois Department of Public Health http://dph.illinois.gov/topics-servies/kisease-and-conditions/diseases-a-z-list/coronavirus
Additionally, the MCDH has asked all schools to follow their usual protocol for parent’s notification of students who are ill and to make sure they describe the illness and symptoms to the school office. We are also asked to reinforce with our staff and students to stay home when ill, cover coughs, wash hand frequently and disinfect high touch surfaces. We have asked our custodial crews to increase their daily cleaning with an emphasis on regularly disinfecting commonly touched surfaces. I have also sent out a school planning resource from the CDC entitled “Get Your School Ready for Pandemic Flu” to all our faculty and staff.
Marian will continue to place a significant importance on prevention as described by the Center for Disease Control. We encourage all individuals with cold-like symptoms to be evaluated by medical personnel and we encourage everyone to click on the links above for additional information on the coronavirus (COVID-19) regarding preventative actions for you and your family.