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Message from Superintendent of Catholic Schools

April 3, 2020

Dear Faithful Catholic School Community,

As we prepare for Holy Week and Easter, I pray you and your families are safe and well. At this
time of prayer, reflection and joy as we anticipate the glory of our risen Lord, we find ourselves
faced with the burdens of uncertainty and the pain of loss. It’s at this moment that we must rely
on our family, neighbors and faith for strength and courage to sustain us through this time.

As a father of two children attending our Catholic schools, I want to express my tremendous
gratitude to our teachers, staff and principals who are going above and beyond for our students
and families. I also want to thank our parents and students for their patience, support and
sacrifice as we grow our distance learning programs and cope with the rapid changes to life. For
those of you who have a loved one, friend or community member who has been stricken with
this terrible virus, or has succumbed to it, we are with you in prayer. For those of you who are
health care professionals and first responders, we are incredibly grateful for your tireless
sacrifice to protect, comfort and heal the sick. This virus knows no bounds and has impacted all
of us in a dramatic way. Progress in our fight will come slowly, but progress is happening.

In light of the evolving messages we are receiving from civic leaders daily, I want to provide you
with an update from the Archdiocese about the status of our school year. From the start of this
crisis, we have followed guidance from county public health officials to determine when we can
resume on-campus instruction – this remains the case. Based on the current “Safer at Home”
order, we anticipated a return to campus on Monday, April 20th. After consultation with public
health officials this week, we should expect this order to be extended again, though, we have
not been given a date. Instead, we’ve been advised that a return to in-person instruction will
resume when it is safe to do so. Therefore, distance learning will continue.

We must acknowledge the reality of this public health emergency – we do not know if we will
return to campus before the end of the school year and preparing for this outcome is now
essential. While it remains our hope to return to campus as soon as possible, the health and
safety of our students and educators is our top priority.

Thank you for your patience and solidarity as we work together to end this crisis. We will
continue to keep you informed of important developments as they emerge. Pray for our nation,
our communities, our families and our Church.

Yours in Christ,
Paul M. Escala
Superintendent of Schools