Dear Parents, Faculty, and Staff:
We reluctantly report that Avenues will remain closed for the remainder of the week. We hope and pray we shall re-open on Monday, November 5.
The reasons for the closing on Friday are known to most of you. The school is still without power, and the evacuation order for the area has still not been lifted. The subway system below 42nd Street remains almost entirely shut down, and surface transportation is exceedingly slow. In addition, the Mayor has cancelled public school classes.
The planned re-opening on Monday hinges on power. Once power is restored, we’ll open. We shall let you know the minute it does. We shall do this by sending another e-mail blast and by posting a notice on the web site.
If power is restored and we do open, it will take maybe five or six hours for all the systems to reach full operating potential. In particular, the interior could be chilly as we begin, and the food service may not have had time to restock. For these reasons, we ask that students come to school with some warm clothing and that they bring a snack and lunch.
Now for the contingencies should we not know the power situation by midday Sunday or, worse yet, should power not be restored in time for the start of school on Monday. In these cases, we shall send out another advisory on or about 1:00 p.m. on Sunday. In that notice we shall update you on our plans for Monday.
Let us now fill you in on related details. First, in response to questions about whether or not the school has a generator, the answer is that it does have an emergency generator with capacity to keep essential power running for about eight hours or, in other words, long enough for everyone to leave the school in safety.
Second, and with regard to other safety features, Avenues is well equipped. We have already run a number of successful fire drills; we have excellent medical support; and we have wide and well-lit stairway exits. You may also be reassured to know that our security staff has been on duty twenty-four hours a day during the power outage to insure the safety of school property.
Third, we are all concerned about the loss of class time in recent days. The leadership team has begun discussing options, and whether school opens on Monday for everyone or not, this team plans to meet and discuss this issue.
And fourth and finally, the scheduled Fall Sports Night Celebration scheduled for Monday, November 5th has been postponed to a later date. Next week, Jennifer Inniss, the Athletic Director, will send a new date and R.S.V.P. request to those families whose daughters and/or sons were on a fall sports teams.
Thanks again for your ongoing support and patience. We hope the good word on power restoration reaches you by midday Sunday, and, if not, you’ll be hearing from us again.
With good wishes for the weekend,
Ty and Skip