COMMENT: Please reconsider the mask mandates. It is has been around 90 degrees the last few days. Adults have made their choice regarding to be vaccinated or note based on all the available information. The risk for children is 1/10th of 1 % of children who could possibly be affected by COVID. As I drive through the district, and I see elementary students outside with masks on, it is infuriating. The damage to their health and social wellbeing continues to be so much more than their minuscule risk of Covid based on the data available. The district has an opportunity to move to a more normal setting, and it is disappointing they are not using the opportunity to do so. At the very least, please consider getting feedback from the parents, teachers and students directly.
RESPONSE: The state Education Department confirmed the message sent to all S-G parents on Sunday night, June 6. That message is below:
School mask requirements remain unchanged at this time
As has been reported, on Friday afternoon, New York State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker issued a letter informing the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that New York would ease the mask requirements in schools as early as Monday, June 7.
Please note that, at this time, Scotia-Glenville and other public schools have received no definite guidance from the state regarding mask requirements or any other changes to COVID health and safety protocols.
As a region, the 24 districts that comprise Capital Region BOCES (including ours) will make no change to mask polices until such guidance is received. Mask wearing will continue in accordance with school district Reopening Plans that were developed based on the comprehensive state guidance of last summer.
District mask policies include requirements for mask use on school buses, in classrooms, in school hallways and on playgrounds. Students regularly take mask breaks through the school day, which include during time of physical exertions.
Especially during these warmer days, teachers and staff often allow students to take mask breaks within appropriate social distancing when inside the school building. When outside, relaxed mask use is also allowed in accordance with applicable health and safety measures.
“We would like to see some formal guidance from the state before we relax our mask requirements,” said Superintendent Susan Swartz. “We understand folks are anxious to return to a sense of normalcy, and we are too, but we need to do this with the safety and health of all students and staff in mind.”
Anyone with questions or concerns should contact Superintendent Susan Swartz at firstname.lastname@example.org.