Dear Compass students and families,

As discussed in our recent letter regarding Compass Academy’s plans for this summer, the final decision regarding whether we would hold an in-person program this summer would be based on the status of the virus in our area, our ability to comply with health and safety regulations and guidelines, and to provide a meaningful and productive experience for our students.

After considerable research and reflection and given that the wellbeing of all participants is our utmost priority, it is with great disappointment that we have decided that an in-person program is neither prudent nor feasible this summer. Just yesterday, the Joplin Globe reported that the incidence of confirmed Covid-19 cases locally has risen exponentially over the last two weeks, including among students attending area summer school programs. The Missouri state Covid-19 Dashboard which tracks the top 10 counties experiencing the highest 7 day percent increase reports that Jasper county leads with an almost 115% increase, followed closely by McDonald county (at 80%), Newton (at 52%), and Joplin (at 52%). In addition to the confirmed cases, there are over 800 people placed on quarantine or isolation between Jasper and Newton counties. And the health departments report that these are scattered throughout the area rather than localized to a particular town or factory. The situation in neighboring Kansas counties seems similar.

To try to keep enrolled students connected and learning, we are working to develop an interactive and engaging program using a combination of resources that will include aspects of our curriculum designed to encourage goal setting, self-paced learning, and will provide incentives for participation — enabling students to reach goals and earn a gift card (as we did last year with the $45 Walmart gift card for perfect attendance). We will update you shortly on details of the program for this summer.

Also, please let me introduce Mr. Clayton Carnahan who has assumed responsibility as Program Director for Compass. Mr. Carnahan is an experienced educator in the field of language arts and enthusiastic about helping all students reach their full potential. As Program Director, he will be directing all our Compass efforts this summer.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to either me or directly to Mr. Carnahan by phone at 417-501-2840 or by email to ccarnahan@compassacademynetwork.org.

Meanwhile, please stay safe and stay connected to Compass through our website and social media.

Sincerely,

Debra Humphreys
Executive Director