main content starts hereIntroduction

On Monday, July 13, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that school districts in New York can follow plans to reopen for in-person schooling in September if COVID-19 infection rates meet certain parameters.
Determinations will be made by region about opening and closing schools as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. If a region is in Phase 4 and has a daily infection rate of 5% or lower over a 14-day average, schools in that region may hold in-person instruction. If daily infection rates exceed 9% over a seven-day average, schools in that region would not be permitted to reopen. Similarly, should a region see such an average after reopening, schools in that region would also be directed to cease in person instruction and switch to virtual (online) only learning. These thresholds are subject to change by the Governor as the school year progresses.

While districts have been instructed to prioritize efforts to return as many students as safely practicable to in-person instruction, the district is also planning for remote/distance learning as well as for a hybrid model that combines in-person instruction and remote learning. As we begin the school year, parents will have the choice to remain exclusively in the remote learning model, but will have to commit to this model of learning for a trimester (at Bradt and Pinewood) or a quarter (at Draper and the High School). The district will survey all parents regarding their intentions from 8/7 – 8/12 and their choices will be binding. Parents will need to commit to three things, virtual or in person learning, transportation by school bus or parent drop off, and purchase of school lunch or bringing a lunch from home. Parents will then be able to change their choices ahead of each trimester/quarter.

The plan outlined here is for the reopening of schools in the Mohonasen Central School District for the 2020-21 school year, following the building closure related to the COVID-19 pandemic. This plan includes procedures that will be followed in the following schools. Please note that building level details, beyond those contained in this document, are still being finalized, pending the results of the parent commitment survey which opens late in the day on Friday (and runs through August 12th). As additional building level details become available they will be shared with parents and included on the links below.

The health and safety of our students, our staff and their families is our top priority. We want students and employees to feel comfortable and safe returning to school campuses. Our reopening plan incorporates recommendations and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) and the New York State Education Department (NYSED).

It is possible that we may need to alternate between in-person and remote learning throughout the year due to recommendations and guidance from our partnering agencies or due to stay-at-home orders from the Governor. The level of infection, the spread of the virus, and response to the disease in our community will be at the forefront of our decision making as we move to open our schools.

Assistant Superintendent for Business, Mr. Christopher Ruberti, will serve as the district’s COVID-19 Coordinator. Mr. Ruberti will continue to work closely with our local health department as our reopening plan is implemented. He will also serve as a central contact for district schools and stakeholders, families, staff and other school community members and will ensure the district is in compliance and following the best practices per state and federal guidelines. Mr. Ruberti may be contacted via email at rubertich@mohonasen.org or via phone at 518-356-8200.

Even though we have officially submitted our plan to the New York State Education Department, the final details of our plans are still being worked out. The parental commitment survey will provide much needed information so that many of the final details of our plans (e.g., transportation runs, class sizes and locations, instructional delivery of special areas) can be solidified. Thank you for your patience as we continue to refine the final details of our plan. The most current building level specific versions for your child may be accessed via our website at the links above.

We would like to acknowledge and thank the 36 members of the Mohonasen Reopening Committee, a stakeholder group consisting of students, teachers, parents, administrators, supervisors, and Board of Education members. Your contributions and efforts are reflected throughout this plan and are very much appreciated.