Dear Maine-Endwell School Community,
The COVID 19 Pandemic has created unprecedented challenges to our public education system. Per guidance provided by New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo, the New York State Department of Health (DOH), and the New York State Education Department (NYSED)– in collaboration and cooperation with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) the District was tasked with creating a reopening plan.
The plan has been developed to address two particular areas: (1) resumption of instruction and (2) efforts to control the spread of COVID 19. The timeline for submittal of this plan is Friday, July 31st, 2020. Per Governor Cuomo, a decision on the reopening of schools will be made between August 1 through August 7. Once a final decision has been made, the reopening plans will be amended for implementation.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THE JULY 31ST REOPENING PLAN?
The submittal of the reopening plan to NYSED (State Education Department) is our initial plan to meet the objectives above – plan for resumption of instruction and control the spread of COVID 19. The plan has specific areas that needed to be addressed (see plan for specifics). The plan is not a final draft. The implementation of the plan will be the focus of the work between August 3rd through September 11th. The first day of instruction for students is expected to be September 14th.
WHAT IS LEFT TO DO?
Once we have a final decision from the Governor regarding the reopening of schools, the District will focus efforts towards implementation of the plan. For example, if the decision is to keep schools closed and begin the school year with remote learning, our efforts will target training for faculty on virtual learning, device and internet access (including a decision on one software platform for consistency), and streamlining student schedules for remote learning. However, if the decision is that we can reopen in-person learning, we will focus on the logistical needs of the reopening plan including the need for three instruction models, in-person, hybrid, and all remote learning.
I want to assure you our initial plan – submitted on July 31st – has all of these considerations planned out. Additionally, the purpose of our Reopening Committee is to identify areas of consideration that will or may need to be addressed. This group has been tasked with helping with the drafting of a reopening plan but also to help with providing input on the implementation of the plan as well. Regardless of the decision by Governor Cuomo, we will have an implementation plan ready when school begins.
This is unchartered waters. The situation is fluid and every changing as we receive guidance from local, state, and federal leaders. Our goal remains the same; students are our first priority and we will make decisions in their [students] best interest
Thank you again for your patience and understanding.
Jason R. Van Fossen,
Superintendent of Schools
PDF VERSION OF THIS MESSAGE