School Health Information & Update

September 14, 2020

Dear Parents, Guardians and Caregivers,

As we prepare to open school, we continue to collaborate with local health department officials to implement the many health and safety protocols aimed at protecting our students and staff.  Among the protocols that we are required to follow is the Department of Health (DOH) requirement of placing any student, who exhibits signs and symptoms of COVID-19, in an isolation area and immediately sending him or her home. This is not a school or district policy. This is DOH protocol that we are required to implement.

It is critical that you have arrangements in place, should your child need to unexpectedly be picked up from school. While we realize leaving and traveling from work can pose a challenge, students cannot remain in the health offices or isolation spaces for long periods of time. Please understand that you might be required to pick up your child if they are exposed to COVID-19, even if they do not have symptoms.

Please do not send your child to school if he or she has symptoms of COVID-19.

Signs and symptoms of COVID-19 can include:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea

Per current guidelines issued by the DOH, if a student presents with any of the above symptoms, or any symptoms of any viral infection including conjunctivitis, they will need to be sent home. When a student is sent home with any of these symptoms, they should be seen by a health care provider.

Return to School

The following is required before a student can return to school after illness:

  • A note from their health care provider must be provided
  • A negative COVID-19 test must be provided, AND
  • Your child must be symptom free for 24 hours without any fever reducing medications.

If your child is not seen by a healthcare provider, they can return to school once 10 days has passed and they are feeling well.

According to NYS guidelines, even if a student is diagnosed with an alternative diagnosis (i.e. strep throat), a COVID-19 test must be obtained and be negative. These guidelines continue to be under review on a regular weekly basis and may change in the future.

What if my child has a pre-existing condition?

If your child has a pre-existing condition (such as seasonal allergies, causing congestion or runny nose, migraines, irritable bowel) he or she will still need to see a health care provider to be diagnosed and tested when symptoms first present. We can then accept a health care provider’s note stating that the student has a chronic condition, and that specific listed symptoms can be expected due to the condition. The note should include a management plan if the symptoms reoccur.

If it is determined that your child has a chronic condition that is causing symptoms, you will not have to take him/her for repeated visits or tests. If your child tests positive for COVID-19, our local department of health will become involved and let you know when he/she can return to school.

What if my child may have been exposed to COVID-19?

If you think your child has been exposed to COVID-19, even if they do not have symptoms, please keep him or her home. Any individual who has come in close contact with someone testing positive may need to quarantine for 14 days at home. The course of action will be determined by the health department. We will work with you to transition your child to virtual learning temporarily if they need to quarantine at home.

Thank you for your continued understanding and cooperation. Our top priority is keeping our students and staff heathy and safe.


Dr. Aaron Bochniak
Interim Superintendent of Schools

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