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    Coronavirus: Letter from the District-March 4, 2020

    Dear Parents and Guardians and Staff: 

    The following is some important information concerning the most recent information on the Coronavirus (CoVid-19) and the recent confirmed cases in the United States.  As a District we are operating under the specific guidance given to us by the State Departments of Health and Education.  Additionally, we are in contact with the Orange County Department of Health and Dr. Lin Reminar, our School Physician. The District has and will continue to reach out to relevant agencies and will comply with recommendations and directives that are issued.

    On Tuesday, March 3,  it was reported that there was a confirmed case of COVID-19 in Westchester and it is suspected that this is the first case of community transmission in New York State.  Two private schools in Westchester have closed which are suspected to have a connection to the person in question.  These schools have students from all over the Westchester area.

    In addition to monitoring the situation, the district is using sanitizing products that disinfect instructional areas and surfaces in our school buildings, as well as our school buses. The sanitizer kills norovirus, MRSA, as well as cold and flu viruses and is approved for use in schools by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

    Monitoring:

    The District continues to:

    Monitor and seek guidance from relevant agencies with regards to Coronavirus. We are expecting additional guidance from the Department ofHealth specific for schools to be given to us this week.

    Follow up with any residents or staff who we know have traveled to affected areas.

    Follow up with any residents or staff who have concerns about District response.

    Cleaning/Germ Hygiene:

    The District continues to follow our flu season protocols for cleaning with which include enhanced cleaning of solid surfaces, common areas, bathrooms, and classrooms.  There is daily disinfection of doorknobs, phones, light switches, and faucets. This enhanced cleaning will continue indefinitely.

    Teachers and staff are being asked to encourage students to wash hands and practice good germ hygiene especially before and after eating and after restroom use.

    Additional signage is being hung throughout our schools to remind students about proper germ hygiene and handwashing.


    Please keep children who are feeling sick at home and seek medical attention if they are experiencing any of the symptoms related to COVID 19 (Novel
    Coronavirus).  These symptoms include fever, cough, difficulty breathing, and aches and pains.

    What can you can do as families:

    Encourage your children to use good germ hygiene, wash hands, and encourage them to remind their friends to do the same.

    Answer any questions your children ask honestly with age-appropriate language and reassure them that the adults are doing everything they can to make sure they are safe.

    Remind children to respect the privacy of their peers and their families and that using Coronavirus as a subject of humor is not appropriate.

    Be calm in front of children and don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know” when they ask questions that don’t have easy answers.

    Try to reduce the spread of rumors by getting information from reputable sources and checking with local or school officials before passing along partial or inaccurate information along.

    The District will continue to work with the community to protect our students.  Our best chance to limit the spread of this virus is for us to work together through clear and accurate communication, effective hygienic practice, and following the guidelines set out by our local health officials. 

    In addition to what is posted on our district website below are some links that provide additional information. Please reach out to your school’s health office if you have any questions or concerns. We will continue to provide information to you as more is learned about the virus.

    Sincerely,

    Michael Bellarosa
    Deputy Superintendent of Schools


    Additional Resources on the Coronavirus outbreak:

    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

     

    https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/

    https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus

Last Modified on March 10, 2020