Good afternoon PCS families,
I wanted to write to give you some reminders and clarifications on some Department of Health information that is out there.
Effective November 4, 2020, students traveling to states other than those contiguous to New York (i.e. Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania) for more than 24 hours may test out of the mandatory 14-day quarantine by doing the following:
- Obtain a COVID-19 diagnostic test within 3 days of departure from that state
- Upon arrival in New York, complete the travel form and quarantine for 3 days
- On the fourth day, obtain another COVID-19 test. If both tests are negative, the student may exit quarantine and return to in-person school
To ensure that we are following all mandated safety protocols, parents will have to indicate whether their child has travelled to a state that does not directly border New York when completing their daily Operoo health screenings. However, because some of the details can be confusing, I would encourage you to contact Nurse Doyle or Principals Peck or Kephart directly to work through existing return to school protocols before making a trip.
Yellow Zone Designations
In order to attack COVID-19 “hot spots,” New York State has developed an initiative with three color coded categories (Yellow Zone- Precautionary Zone; Orange Zone-Warning Zone; Red Zone-Cluster Itself). Typically, the clusters are isolated to zip codes, and schools falling within the borders are required to implement certain procedures to remain open for in-person learning. For example, schools located in “Yellow Zones” are required to administer non-invasive COVID-19 tests to 20% of their student and staff populations EVERY TWO WEEKS (this has changed since it was weekly as of Friday, November 13). The rapid tests produce results within 15 minutes, but they may not be administered without the consent of parents or employees.
I want to emphasize that PCS is not currently located in a zone, and that our District does not have plans to begin testing. However, because some of our neighbors have been developing testing procedures as a result of their yellow zone designations, I wanted you to know that the rules for reopening are constantly evolving. We want to be prepared if we enter one of the designated zones.
Also a reminder that we have parent/teacher conferences coming up on Monday, November 23 and Tuesday, November 24. There will be 12:00 noon dismissals on both days. These conferences will be conducted via Teams, Zoom, or phone conferences.
Finally, please continue to stay diligent with health and safety practices, and communicate the importance to students. We all have the same goal to keep PCS open, and we all play an important role is accomplishing that!