Superintendent Office | 534 11th St. Frankfort, MI 49635
PH 231-352-4641 | FAX 231-352-5066
Every Student, Every Classroom, Every Day
The Frankfort-Elberta Area School District is located in Frankfort, Michigan in Benzie County and is nestled on the shores of Lake Michigan, 45 miles west of Traverse City. The school population for the 2020-2021 school year is 475 students, eager to learn. Educators are dedicated and caring and always look out for the student's best interest. M-STEP and standardized test scores are consistently above state and region averages.
*Our School Board welcomes community input at the monthly meetings. To see the schedule of upcoming board meetings visit the School Board page.
*Interested in enrolling your child at Frankfort Elberta Area Schools? Click here for information!
COVID-19 UPDATE FROM FEAS SUPERINTENDENT, JEFF TOUSLEY
November 25, 2020
Dear FEAS Parent or Guardian,
First and foremost, Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. Even with these challenging times, I personally have so much to be thankful for as we begin the holiday season, including the opportunity to work with FEAS students and families. On behalf of the FEAS staff, we wish you the very best and our hope is you remain healthy and safe.
As you are aware, the 7-12 building has been in remote learning mode since the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) directed students in grades 9-12 to learn from home for a three-week pause in face to face learning. The elementary school has been at home as well, due to COVID concerns involving a few students and staff. In working with the health department, elementary students moved to remote learning as a precautionary safety measure.
We are hopeful we will get the green light from MDHHS for a return to in-person learning at the junior-senior high school beginning Wednesday, December 9. This past Tuesday, I attended a virtual meeting with medical professionals as I do each week. In reviewing and discussing COVID data, cases are on a very rapid rise in our region. I am hopeful we can return to in-person learning, but at this time I have no definitive answer if that will occur. We can only hope.
The elementary school was set to return to in-person instruction on Monday, November 30. As I have had a number of conversations between myself and others, I have changed the elementary return date to Wednesday, December 9, which now aligns with the hopeful return date for 7-12 students. My decision was based on our students and staff being in the remote groove, along with the health department’s concern of rising COVID cases, which could very likely increase due to holiday gatherings and travel. I also see the importance to stay with a consistent remote learning path versus the potential yo-yo effect of remote learning, back to in-person learning, and the possibility of remote learning again, depending on MDHHS decision to allow high schools to return to in-person learning. Most importantly, the need to keep the health and safety of staff, students and FEAS families is my priority.
These decisions are never easy as I believe in-person learning provides benefits well above remote learning. Like many decisions related to COVID, I know this plan will come with mixed reviews. Some will be pleased and some displeased. I respectfully appreciate having children learn at home versus school raises many challenges for families. I also know my staff would much prefer to see their students faces in person and not on a screen.
Please continue to stay in contact with your child’s teacher(s) regarding any roadblocks inhibiting their ability to work remotely. Please reach out with any questions or needed help.
Jeff Tousley FEAS Superintendent
A Letter from the TBAISD Area Superintendents
Dear Traverse Bay Area regional school community,
On behalf of a consortium of area leaders representing the medical, educational, public health and business communities of Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska and Leelanau counties, we commend the members of these communities for their perseverance and extraordinary patience as we continue to work through this pandemic. While safety remains a top priority, it is a privilege for us to witness the energy in our schools and throughout our business community the past few months. Each day, we are reminded of how critical our combined efforts are in mitigating the spread of COVID-19 and keeping our communities safe and open.
As we approach the holiday season we wish to remind everyone to remain vigilant and continue to follow guidance and safety measures from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).
With the recent increase of positive cases across the region, health officials are urging families to consider modified holiday celebrations that are small, local, and encourage wearing of masks, social distancing, and proper hygiene practices to help slow the spread of the virus. Our goal is to stay safe, keep our schools open face-to-face, and our businesses and economy moving forward.
Below is guidance from MDHHS and the CDC to consider before, during and after a gathering to stay safe this holiday season.
Our schools are ready to transition to distance learning if the need does arise, and we will continue to work in partnership and follow public health data in the months ahead. We urge you to minimize group gatherings, continue to monitor for symptoms, and practice basic preventative measures to prevent the spread of viruses such as COVID-19, influenza and the common cold.
Thank you for your continued support. Together, we can slow the spread of COVID-19! Best wishes for a safe and healthy holiday season.
Jeff Tousley and our Regional TBAISD Superintendents
Public Notice - FEAS COVID-19 Case Reporting
Notice of FEAS Case Reports: 11
There are eight confirmed cases to report at Frankfort High School.
There are three confirmed cases to report at Frankfort Elementary School.
In accordance with state emergency orders and the FEAS Preparedness and Response Plan, FEAS will initiate communication and reporting procedures immediately upon learning of a probable or confirmed "school associated case" of COVID-19. A school associated case is defined as a probable or confirmed COVID-19 case among students, teachers, school staff members, or any other person, who was present on school property or at a school function under circumstances that may result in the transmission, or contraction, of COVID-19 during their infectious period. The following communication will occur:
The local health department will contact FEAS within 24 hours of learning the results of a positive or probable school associated case.
FEAS will immediately support the health department with the contact tracing process upon notification of a probable or confirmed case of COVID-19.
Persons identified through contract tracing as a close contact to someone in the school setting, who tested positive for COVID-19, will be contacted directly by your local health department. The health department will advise those individuals on what steps to take. If you, or your family member, is not contacted by the health department, you or your child are not identified as a close contact.
Mr. Tousley, FEAS Superintendent will communicate with the specific building principal to keep them informed of all necessary information related to a specific COVID-19 case.
FEAS will provide public notice to the community on the district home page of the FEAS website within 24 hours of being notified by the health department.
Please know that FEAS will adhere to all confidentiality policies and procedures including Family Educational Privacy Act (FERPA, HIPPA, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).Therefore, specific information may not always be available regarding any particular case. We must do all our part to avoid gossip and speculation to ensure that all students and staff members feel welcomed and supported, especially those who may be absent, or are returning to school after an absence.
Procedures for Students Pending COVID-19 Test Results:
Students who have been directed by their primary care physician or health clinic to quarantine pending the results of a COVID-19 test are asked to provide a doctor's note prior to returning to school. The school district continues to collaborate with doctor's offices and health departments to help create consistency across medical practices. It is also noted that a return to school note by a doctor is not required, but FEAS is strongly recommending we have documentation stating your child is cleared to return to school.
Frankfort-Elberta Area Schools Early Release Days
During the 2019-2020 school year, students had a later start to the school day, known as Late Start Wednesdays. These days are invaluable to the district as staff use this time for professional development, child study team meetings, curriculum work that includes cross-grade conversations within grade levels, and in many cases between buildings that allow us to look at scope and sequence of curriculum areas. The preference would be to continue with Late Start Wednesdays if this was a typical year. However, due to our established health protocols, we will be having Early Release Days on Wednesday's throughout the school year beginning on November 4. The district calendar is updated and can be found on the district's main page. We have no more than two Early Release Days per month.
The elementary preschool rooms will not release early on the given Wednesdays. However, if you have a preschool child in the program, you are welcome to pick-up your preschool child along with his or her siblings at the 1:30 p.m. dismissal time. We will do our best to limit any inconveniences for our families. As a district we appreciate your support with the early release days.
District Twitter Feed
Congratulations to the
Frankfort High School Class of 2020!
Watch Graduation below!