Last updated, January 19, 2022
Student, faculty, staff and visitor safety is a priority for all members of our school district community. As unintended disruptions occurred, immediate responses were taken. Investigations were conducted and law enforcement agencies were contacted when necessary. Reflection on procedures and processes led to modifications and strict enforcement of the student Code of Conduct was swiftly implemented.
We are in the initial stages of developing a fourth campus of our high school. This campus will address the academic and behavioral needs of our students who have been drastically impacted by the most recent pandemic. The school will implement a research based model to support a “whole child approach” that includes social emotional and developmental health needs along with an instructional model suited for students who are undercredited. This will be a transitional program that will prepare students to reintegrate back into one of the three current campuses of our high school.
The district has established a collaborative relationship with the Orange County Sheriff's Department. District staff are working with members of the Sheriff’s Department to conduct safety assessments in each of our middle schools and each campus of our high school. District staff will conduct the safety assessment in each of our elementary schools. The district will also be providing emergency response preparedness training for the faculties in each of our schools.
Adequate social distancing between adults and students is occurring in all of our schools. Although the goal of six feet physical distance between students is always attempted, at times, we are unable to achieve the standard. In areas where there is a reduction in physical distancing, masking and proper ventilation are highlighted. Reduction if physical distance is also limited in duration (time).
Several families requested the district provide a fully remote option for students. The district surveyed families to determine the level of interest. Individuals responding to the survey in the affirmative, were asked to complete a second survey. The second survey provided criteria by which the district would follow in the consideration of a virtual model.
This criteria included the following:
Medically Fragile: A child will be deemed medically fragile if they have an acute or serious medical condition that requires active treatment. This definition was modified to also include situations where a student may live in a household where an individual is considered immunocompromised.
Families may request consideration and their request is reviewed by the district Medical Director.
Excellence while Virtual: Students who demonstrated enhanced proficiency when receiving a virtual model of instruction as compared to an in-person model would be considered for a possible virtual model. Data was collected and reviewed by the Office of Curriculum and Instruction and the Office of Exceptional Learners.
Directors from multiple divisions were provided with a list of students whose parents indicated that they would like their child to receive remote learning.
- Directors met with Principals and/or teachers to discuss attendance, and academic data to compare that data with 2020-21 remote learning. Additionally, the schools were asked to recommend or (not) the child for remote learning.
- Directors called parents and discussed the decision and the rationale for the decision.
The district is required to offer every student a free and appropriate public education. Students suspended from school, during the non COVID-19 timeframe, would receive their instruction in their home, after the regular school day. While confronted with the environment caused by COVID-19, teachers are providing this level of instruction, beyond the regular school day, in a virtual model.
STATEMENT FROM COMMISSIONER BETTY A. ROSA ON NASSAU COUNTY EXECUTIVE ORDER
Under the authority of Public Health Law § 206, the COVID-19 face-coverings regulation (10 NYCRR 2.60), and the Commissioner of Health’s determinations dated August 26 and December 10, 2021, counties are required to enforce school masking regulations. The regulation, which applies to schools and many other sectors, requires local health departments to enforce school mask mandates (10 NYCRR 2.60 [f] [ii]). The Commissioner of Health can additionally direct the local health department to enforce the regulation under the Public Health Law.
Counties do not have the legal authority to require boards of education to vote on specific issues. School officers take an oath to obey all legal requirements. The State Education Department expects school boards will follow all legal requirements, including the face-covering regulation.