School open for in-person learning on Jan. 4

Dear Parents & Families,

Happy New Year! I hope you had an enjoyable Winter Recess. I am reaching out to affirm that our school will reopen for in-person learning tomorrow, January 4.

We recognize that the COVID-19 infection rate has continued to increase in our area in recent days. However, all available data indicates that the rate of virus transmission in schools is low. Governor Andrew Cuomo has said that the precautions schools have taken have been effective.

The superintendents of the Capital Region BOCES area met over the weekend and are united in our belief that schools are the best place for children to be during the day. Last spring we saw the effects of closing schools for all in-person learning. So far this year, we have seen that schools can open safely amid this pandemic.

Unless staffing shortages require all-remote learning or there is evidence of broader virus transmission in schools, our schools will remain open for in-person learning. We will continue to work with our public health partners to monitor all available information, including how the increased infection rates relate to schools. In addition, remote learning options continue to be available to all families.

At school, all of our health and safety precautions remain fully in effect. They include mask wearing, social distancing, enhanced cleaning and disinfecting, and the daily health screening. We again remind you that it is critical to answer the daily attestation honestly and that anyone who is sick should stay home. These are important precautions designed to limit the spread of the virus.

We will also continue to notify you of any confirmed COVID-19 cases in our school community. There have been no new cases in the Menands School community beyond what has already been shared.

As we’ve seen over the last several months, the pandemic can create uncertainty, but working with your cooperation we have been able to create a safe learning environment and will continue to do so. Certainly do not hesitate to reach out to me or Mrs. Cannavo should you have any questions.

Sincerely,

Dr. Maureen A. Long