Notes from student-teacher “town hall,” 1/12


Xander Levine

Lincoln’s administrators led a town hall for students on Jan. 12 to provide updates about potential school closures and other student questions and concerns.

Below is a summary of the student-administrator “town hall” hosted on Jan. 12, 2022. Administrators in attendance included Vice Principal Chris Brida, Vice Principal Mariam Higgins, Vice Principal Maude Lamont and Athletic Director Jessica Russell.



If athletes test positive for COVID-19, do they have to quarantine for 10 days?

According to Russell, Portland Public Schools (PPS) is looking to change the rules to allow student athletes to come back earlier if they have no symptoms and have tested negative before their 10-day quarantine is finished. Currently, CDC quarantine guidelines for the general population read as follows: “People with COVID-19 should isolate for five days and if they are asymptomatic or their symptoms are resolving (without fever for 24 hours), follow that by five days of wearing a mask when around others to minimize the risk of infecting people they encounter,” according to the CDC website. At this time, Lincoln is still requiring students who test positive to quarantine for ten days before returning to school. 

“We hope it changes soon,” Higgins said. “It gets students back in the building quicker.”

Are there any updates about Lincoln shifting to distance learning?

School closures are solely based on staffing. If a school is experiencing staffing shortages, that is when PPS will make the decision to close the school temporarily. According to Lamont, substitute teacher pools, where schools around the district get their subs, have gotten smaller, but Lincoln has still seen relatively the same amount of subs available.

Higgins believes all schools in the district will eventually go temporarily virtual due to cases or staffing issues, but the Lincoln administration team wants to stay open and applauds those who are doing everything they can to make sure Lincoln can continue with in-person learning. 

“Students who wear masks and keep their distance are the people who keep school open,” Lamont said. “Lincoln’s high vax rate is a testament to how much this community cares.”

Online learning this year is not being considered Comprehensive Distance Learning (CDL) as it was during the 2020-21 school year, but rather “Temporary Distance Learning” (TDL). If Lincoln were to shift to TDL, students would have one “transition day” to come in and pick up technology, meals and other services.

What have attendance rates been looking like since returning from winter break? attendance numbers for Monday?

The week of Jan. 3, an average of around 15% of Lincoln students were absent each day. On Monday, Jan. 10, the number jumped to 21%, the highest percentage of absences so far. Since then, the number of students present has started to rise. 

Will Lincoln host a prom this year?

Lincoln is waiting on guidance from PPS to make any decisions, but the administration team has said that they will work hard to schedule assemblies, dances and large group gatherings for students when it is safe to do so.

General Questions

Why do we forecast before finals?

 Forecasting is based on the district staffing timeline. Because Lincoln is moving into a new building next year, the district and the administration team need to have student schedules nailed down well ahead of time. 

When is the SAT for juniors? 

 Lincoln will be hosting a free SAT for all juniors on April 13, 2022.

Why is the all-gender bathroom being locked before school ends every day?

The administration team has not been locking the bathroom. They suspect a student might be closing it and will look into the issue and work on solving it.