An Important Update for Derby Elementary School Families from Superintendent John Castle:

Dear Derby Elementary School Families,

Thank you all for your patience and support through our process of going remote this week. We recognize that the quick shift to remote learning and making child care arrangements was a challenge for many families. We continue to work with the Vermont Department of Health in our response and planning. This morning I met with Stacey Urbin and Rhonda Lucas (virtually) to review how things are going, the status of staffing, and considerations for next week. Most importantly, we are committed to ensuring the health and welfare of students and staff to the best of our ability. We are confident that the building is safe to be in and have allowed staff who are not required to quarantine to work from school through the week. We hope to have students in most grades return to in-person instruction on Monday, yet need to continue to evaluate our availability of staff. Our goal is to inform parents by Saturday evening of the plan for this coming Monday. We appreciate your continued patience, as there are some aspects of the process of contact tracing that make it difficult for us to make a final decision at this point. We fully appreciate your need to know as far in advance as possible for next week so that your family can plan accordingly.


John A. Castle

NCSU Superintendent of Schools


October 25, 2020

Dear NCSU School-Community,

We are notifying staff and families across our school-community that a person at Derby Elementary School has been identified with a positive case of COVID-19. We have been and will continue to follow all safety and response procedures. Please see the NCSU COVID-19 Symptomatic & Positive Cases Guide for more information.

We recommend that you take action to help limit the spread of COVID-19, even if you or your child are not experiencing symptoms. If you or your child had direct contact with affected individuals at Derby Elementary School, a contact tracer may be trying to reach you with important information. Please answer the phone if the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) contacts you. The phone number may not show up on caller ID, so it is important to answer all calls over the next 24 hours.

The most important things you can do:

  • Make sure your child is wearing a mask.

  • Make sure your child is washing his/her hands.

  • Keep your child home if he or she is sick.

  • Call your primary care provider if you or your child have symptoms of COVID-19.

How can parents and guardians help prevent COVID-19 from spreading?

  • If your child is sick, keep them home.

  • Make sure members of your household wash their hands often using soap and water for 20 seconds.

  • Make sure every member of your household covers their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or their elbow and then washes their hands afterward.

  • Wear a mask in public, especially when you cannot stay six feet apart from other people.

We are working with the Vermont Department of Health to keep our community safe.

  • We continue to follow the AOE/VDH guidance included in A Strong and Healthy Start.

  • We are cleaning and disinfecting the school per the VDH guidance.

  • Employees and sick children will not return to work until they are healthy.

Learn more about getting tested in Vermont.

Thank you for understanding that, due to medical privacy laws, we are not able to release the names of any individuals with COVID-19. Please do not speculate, ask, post on social media the speculation around individuals -- it is important to respect the privacy of our community members. We will continue to communicate changes and updates with you. With your participation, we believe we can create a safe experience for your children this school year. For more information visit

What will happen at Derby Elementary School? Will there be remote learning?

We are working with the VDH, as well as staff members of Derby Elementary School, to determine close contacts and next steps. DES will be closed on Monday and will pivot to remote learning on Tuesday, continuing for the remainder of the week. Each school has emergency remote learning plans which are ready to be activated if needed.

We will provide further communication with you throughout this event. It is important we support each other and stay vigilant in suppressing the spread of the virus. Thank you for your support in staying safe and healthy. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Be well!


John A. Castle

NCSU Superintendent of Schools


COVID-19 Attendance Guide for Families and Staff

If someone who lives in your house is symptomatic and being tested for COVID-19, no other member of the household needs to isolate/quarantine as long as they are asymptomatic, have not had exposure to someone known to have COVID-19, or have not engaged in high-risk travel.*

The asymptomatic student or staff member may continue to go to school/work until such time as the family member being tested comes back positive for COVID-19 or the student/staff member becomes symptomatic.

If the test result is positive, the asymptomatic student/staff must stay home (quarantine) for 14 days or, if they continue to be asymptomatic, can be tested on day 7 and if negative, can return to school/work.

This guidance comes from the Vermont Department of Health and is endorsed by our local pediatricians and physicians.

*exposure/travel: had close contact (within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) with a person with confirmed COVID-19; or traveled to or lived in an area where the local or state health department is reporting large number of cases of COVID-19. High-risk travel also includes travel to a “green” area via public transportation (e.g. airplane, bus).

November 2020.pdf
BEST COMMITMENTS 151203 Portrait reduced.pdf