main content starts here

North Colonie Reopening FAQ

The district has received hundreds of questions from families since the beginning of July and as you can imagine, it is impossible to answer them all. Below you will find the answers to what we know at this time. Please remember, our plans continue to evolve and anything is subject to change. If you have a question that has not been answered in this FAQ, the reopening plan, or is specific to your child, please use the email addresses below to contact the correct department:

Learning Options | School Schedules | Elementary School | Jr. High/High School | Transportation | Health & Safety | Mental Health & Wellness | Special Education | School Buildings | Lunch/Meals | Music & Arts | Sports/Physical Education | Before and After School Care | Other

Learning Options

What options do families have for returning to school in the fall?

The current plan calls for elementary students to attend school in-person daily and secondary students will have a blend of in-person and virtual learning. However, those who may not feel comfortable returning to an in-person educational environment have the option for full remote learning as well, as long as they notify the district of their plan by Aug. 21. Once a family has made their decision, students will be required to follow that plan for an entire semester. We will be sharing a survey with families to gather your choice in early August.

When will we know what the final scenario is?

    The final plan was posted to the district website on Friday, July 31. However, anything is subject to change. View the reopening plan here.

    What are options if parents don’t feel safe sending their children to school?

      If parents are not comfortable sending their child to school, they will have the option to keep their child home for remote learning. This remote option may be staffed by North Colonie employees, by other Capital Region educators through a Capital Region BOCES collaborative, or a combination of the two. Once a family has made their decision, students will be required to follow that plan for an entire semester. Parents who are choosing the remote option will need to notify the district by Aug. 21 in order for us to plan accordingly.

      What if a family decides to send their child for in-person learning and then later decides they would like to do remote only? Is it possible to switch?

      Yes.

      What will the schedules for in-person learning look like?

      • Elementary students (K-6) will have 5 hours of in-person instructional time daily.
      • Elementary classroom cohorts (no larger than 15), grades K-3, will receive 2.5 hours of direct instruction daily. In the 2.5 hour block students will receive instruction in ELA, math, science and social studies. In the second half of the school day students will have special area classes, small group instruction and independent work time
      • Elementary classroom cohorts, grades 4-6, will receive instruction in three, one hour blocks. In the three blocks students will be learning ELA, math, sci/ss. Students will have special area classes over the course of their school week
      • 7th and 8th graders will have 3.5 hours of in-person instructional time daily. (Students will have additional remote work responsibilities with teacher support.)
        • In grades 7-8 students will complete a full day over the span of two half days. For example, on one half day a student may attend math, world language and an exploratory class and the following half day the student may attend English, social studies and an additional exploratory class
      • 9th-12th graders will have 3.5 hours of in-person instructional time, with a 2 days on and 2 days off rotation. (Students will have additional remote work responsibilities with teacher support.)
        • In grades 9-12 our high school students will attend a full eight period day over the course of two half-days. For example, a student would attend periods 1-4 one day and attend periods 5-8 the following day

      If students are in-person, how big will class sizes be?

      Upon reopening, the number of students in each of our classrooms will be reduced to adhere to CDC guidance regarding proper social distancing. Class sizes will not exceed 15 students.

      For the remote learning days, will the lessons be live and interactive for students to ask questions?

      Remote learning opportunities for secondary students will include a greater emphasis on synchronous instruction, with teachers finding ways to provide live instruction and lessons to students. Teachers will ensure that their students are directly engaged with them and their class peers in experiential learning on a regular basis.

      What would a typical remote learning class day look like for K-6? 

      Student schedules will remain the same whether instruction is in person or remote so that students do not encounter conflicts wherein synchronous lessons for different subjects are offered simultaneously.

      How will you handle classes that are meant to be hands on?  

      Our academic supervisors are working on the best ways to achieve this, specific to their discipline. More details on this will be included in the PAC presentation on August 13. 

      Will the district be returning to the previous grading system or continuing a modified approach to grading? 

      The district will be returning to the previous grading models at all levels.

      Are AP classes considered electives, or can we assume that they will all be offered as originally scheduled? 

      AP classes will continue to be offered.

      What does the 100% virtual option for school look like? 

      To ensure high-quality remote learning experiences, we will standardize the use of a single online learning platform, to the extent possible, and develop a common, coordinated set of guidelines for teachers to follow when using the platform with students. North Colonie will be using one platform for our remote learning, Google Classroom. We will be developing and sharing short videos to aid families who need support in how to best navigate the platform. Teachers will also be available during ‘office hours’ should there be questions about an individual teacher’s classroom. More information can be found in the reopening plan.

      If a child will be remote learning, will they be able to Zoom in live in the classroom so they too can participate with their teacher  with the rest of their class? 

      The academic administrators are working on the models for participation from remote learning and looking at the best practices for each discipline. More information on this will be shared at the August 13 PAC presentation.

      School Schedules

      Will schedules be staggered to allow for less students at arrival/dismissal?

      Each building is working on a plan for arrival and dismissal so students do not cluster at arrival and dismissal. Each building has specific plans as the traffic flow and entry configuration of each building is different.

      What will the school day hours be for all buildings and grade levels?  

      More details about the school day will be released prior to the start of the school year.

      Elementary School

      What will the experience be for incoming kindergarteners?  

      Incoming kindergarten students will have an orientation prior to starting school. Once school begins, kindergarten students will be screened and we will begin our learning journey. Although things will definitely be different due to social distancing measures, our commitment to providing for the students’ academic and social emotional needs will remain paramount.  

      What will recess look like?

      Students will only go to recess with their classroom cohort. Playgrounds will be cleaned per CDC guidance. Outdoor areas, like playgrounds in schools will be routinely cleaned. We will also make use of our fields for other outdoor activities.

      Will there continue to be Art, Music, and Physical Education?

      Yes, students will continue to receive their special area classes.

      For students in grades 4-6 who have never been to the jr. high school building, will there be an opportunity for an orientation to the building?

      North Colonie is currently considering how many days we will need to use prior to students starting in-person, as the transition back to school will necessitate a great deal of coordination, meeting, learning and preparing for all involved.These days will also be utilized for student orientation. This time will allow small groups of students to meet with their new teacher and begin to establish the relationship necessary for a successful school year.

      Will LEP continue? Who will it be offered to and what will it look like?  

      Our two LEP teachers will be assigned to the junior high school with our grades 4-6 students. Their exact schedule is still being determined. 

      If the elementary principal is at the original elementary school, who’s going to oversee grades four through 6 at the junior high school? 

      Our three veteran principals, Mr. Davis Chamberlain, Ms. Dawn Lange, and Mr. Jan Zadoorian will be overseeing the students in grades 4-6.

      Will distance learning (at the elementary level) be grouped by grade or school specific? (Ex: would a 2nd grade distance learner be with all 2nd graders in the district or specific to only their home elementary school?) 

      This answer will be dependent upon enrollment. It may differ by grade level, but we will keep “section” sizes consistent with class sizes that students would have if they were physically in school.  

      What kind of live interaction will kids get with other students from their own elementary school using the remote option?

      We will be building in time for socialization and interaction for our elementary students. However, if it is in their elementary school or a districtwide cohort will depend on enrollment per grade level.

      Jr. High School/High School

      How will students change classes and use hallways?

      To the extent possible, students will remain in small cohorts if/when leaving the classroom, such as for recess or any necessary transition, so as to reduce their exposure to additional students. Jr. High School teachers will be rotating into the classroom.

      Will CEIP (Career Exploration Internship Program) at the high school still be an option during the 2020-21 school year?

      CEIP with modification will still be an option. More information will be provided.

      Will students in grades 7-12 be using lockers? 

      Both CDC guidance and Department of Health guidance recommend that we avoid the use of lockers. Since students in 7-12 will only be taking half of their classes each day, we would expect that they would bring their materials with them in their backpacks. If necessary, we will make individual accommodations.

      How it will be decided into which group, the A or the B group, each high school student will be placed. On what basis will that decision be made?

      We are still finalizing the method for doing this. However, the current thinking is that we would separate by elementary school zones. Our transportation director is looking at creating the zones, based on elementary school zones, to be more efficient with transportation.

      Will all high school lectures be recorded and made available on the day of instruction?

      The academic administrators are working on the models for participation from remote learning and looking at the best practices for each discipline. More information on this will be shared at the August 13 PAC presentation. Students will, however, have the opportunity to participate in live remote instruction as opposed to only viewing recorded lessons.

      Transportation

      How will school buses be made safe?  

      • Students who are able will be required to wear masks and social distance on the bus to the extent practicable; however, students whose physical or mental health would be impaired are not required to wear a face covering, but must be appropriately socially distanced.
      • Members of the same household may be seated within six (6) feet of each other.
      • In terms of transportation safety:
        • We are building time into our routing schemes to allow for cleaning of bus seats and commonly touched areas daily.
        • We have 4 fogger machines that will be used midday to sanitize all buses.
        • Cleaning supplies have been made available to all drivers and aides.
        • Drivers are required to wash their hands before entering the bus.
        • Drivers and aides that are in close contact with students (helping to buckle seat belt, etc.) will also have a face shield and gloves in addition to a mask.

      Will the process for student drop off/pick up be streamlined if parents wish to transport children instead of riding the bus?

      This will be decided by each individual school.

      If parents drive their student(s) to school, will parents be required to sign out students at the end of the day?

      More information will be coming from your child’s school in the future.

      If my childs pick up/drop off location will be different than our home due to different start/end times, who do I notify? 

      If your child is being picked up or dropped off at any location other than your home, you will need to fill out a childcare application. Childcare applications can be found here. Forms can be submitted electronically.

      Transportation to locations other than home addresses follow the same guidelines as regular school transportation. It is the responsibility of the childcare provider to insure safe travel of the student(s) to and/or from the bus stop. Childcare locations must be within school district boundaries and be the same location each school day. Due to the mandated social distancing on the bus, we will be strictly enforcing the following changes:

      • Students will no longer be allowed to have a pass to ride the bus home with a friend.
      • If the student attends CYC at their school they will not be allowed to ride the bus home.
      • We cannot allow any deviation from their regular busing schedule.    

      Will juniors be able to drive to school for the 2020-21 school year?

      Since we will have cohorts at the high school each day, we may be able to extend driving privileges to juniors.

      Will busing still be available to offsite aftercare? Ex: Master Yangs Taekwondo?

      Yes, if you have not already done so please submit your application ASAP. Applications can be submitted electronically and can be found here.

      What if you start with one form of transportation, such as selecting the bus and then you want to change to driving the student to school, can you change?

      We understand that family needs change, and we will be adaptable to the extent possible, however we will only be assigning busing if it is requested. If a parent selects busing and then chooses to transport, we will remove that student’s bus stop from the route. However, if a parent chooses to transport, then decides they want a bus, there may not be a seat on the bus for them.

      Staff

      Will the building principals from last year remain in their buildings? 

      Yes.

      Will teachers be tested for COVID before in-person learning begins?

      In accordance with Dept. of Health guidelines, all individuals entering school district property will be required to make a daily attestation regarding their exposure to COVID-19 or any symptoms they may be experiencing. In some specific cases, an employee may need to receive a negative COVID test before entering school district property.

      What happens if a student or teacher tests positive for COVID-19? 

      School staff must immediately report any illness of students or staff to the school nurse or other designated school staff. If a student or staff member reports having tested positive for COVID-19, school administrators or his/her designee should notify the local health department to determine what steps are needed for the school community. It is strongly recommended that schools comply with CDC guidance and not conduct COVID-19 testing or require testing or antibody testing of students or staff members. The decision of whether a test needs to be conducted should be determined by a healthcare provider or the local department of health.

      What if someone who lives in the same house as a teacher tests positive?

      The decision of whether a test needs to be conducted or an employee needs to be quarantined should be determined by a healthcare provider or the local department of health.

      Will there be a time for teachers to transition to new locations and to be properly trained on new procedures, etc.? 

      Yes. We will use the Superintendent’s Conference Days to complete this work.

      Will there be an assigned teacher that will be available to see your child more than just office hours? 

      Yes. Our remote learning will include synchronous lessons, asynchronous lessons, as well as office hours.

      What is the district doing to help our traveling teachers/staff with staying safe and also not exposing a higher number of students and other staff within the district? 

      We are limiting traveling teachers to a minimum. Those who do travel will travel by the day, not during the day. The vast majority of our teachers will be assigned to a single building.

      Health & Safety

      Will students and staff be required to wear masks?

      Yes, all students, staff and visitors will be required to wear an appropriate face covering. Face coverings must cover the nose and mouth and extend to the ears. In addition, face shields may be worn over the top of a face mask. Staff are encouraged to supply their own mask but disposable masks will be provided if needed. All students will be required to wear face coverings. Exceptions will be made for those students who cannot tolerate wearing a mask due to his/her/their IEP or medical condition. Students are allowed to remove their face coverings during meals and for short breaks so long as they maintain appropriate social distance. Upon completion of the day, reusable masks should be laundered and disposable masks should be discarded in the appropriate waste receptacles. Training about the proper wearing of masks and their removal/disposal will be provided along with signage throughout the buildings.

      Will the district provide PPE for all students and staff?

      The district will have extra PPE for students. The district will provide PPE for all staff. The Director of Custodial Services is responsible for ensuring that appropriate levels of PPE is available for all that need it.

      Are face shields an option?

      Face shields can be worn, as long as students/staff are wearing a mask as well. Face shield cannot be worn as a replacement for masks.

      Will every child have their temperature checked before entering a school building?

      Yes. Daily temperature checks are required for all students and staff (which will be done at home) with required daily attestations. An individual with a temperature greater than 100.0°F must be denied entry into the facility or sent directly to a dedicated area prior to being picked up or otherwise sent home.

      Who is responsible for taking the temperatures of students before they come to school?

      Parents/guardians will be responsible for taking the temperature of their student(s) before they come to school. The parent/guardian will also have to attest on an app. each day that they have taken the temperature. If families are in need of a thermometer, they can email health@ncolonie.org and we will provide them with a thermometer prior to the start of the school year.

      What health precautions will be put in place at all levels?

      • The district will provide ready access to hand sanitizer in all classrooms and common spaces.
      • The district will provide disposable wipes/approved cleaners to faculty and staff so that commonly used surfaces (e.g., keyboards, desks, remote controls).
      • The district has developed cleaning and disinfecting procedures for the school in accordance with CDC and DOH guidance for all classrooms, common spaces, and transportation.

      Can the school district employ a strategy where staff/students (families) can self-administer COVID tests?

      No, the district will not be providing COVID tests for students or staff. It is strongly recommended that schools comply with CDC guidance and not conduct COVID-19 testing or require testing or antibody testing of students or staff members. 

      Schools are required to conduct drills throughout the school year. What will those look like this year?

      The district will conduct fire (evacuation) drills and lockdown drills as required by education law and regulation and the fire code without exceptions. Schools must continue to conduct mandatory fire and lockdown drills according to the existing statutory schedule. Drills will be conducted in a manner that maintains social distancing at exits and gathering points outside the building, while still preparing students to respond in emergencies.

      Who will be responsible for the cost of cleaning materials for each school?

      The district is responsible for the cost of all cleaning materials and PPE. 

      Can you speak more in depth regarding the electronic screening that is supposed to occur prior to school?

      Before coming to school each day, students and staff will be required to have their temperature checked and attest that they are healthy and do not have a high temperature. The district is currently evaluating several different apps. for the communication of this information. As soon as one is selected, we will provide information and training for families and staff.

      Who is responsible for cleaning the areas where students and staff have been? How often will it be done?

      Each building will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized every day by members of our custodial department. High touch areas such as door knobs and stair railings will be cleaned several times throughout the day.

      If students are requested to return to school and a positive case results how will that be handled? How will contact tracing be done?

      Contact tracing is a public health function performed by local public health departments to trace all persons who had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19. This allows public health officials to put in place isolation or other measures to limit the spread of the virus. Schools must cooperate with state and local health department contact tracing. 

      What happens if a student or staff member is subject to quarantine?

      If a student needs to quarantine, the district will provide a remote option for schooling. This remote option may be staffed by North Colonie employees, by other Capital Region educators through a Capital Region BOCES collaborative, or a combination of the two. If a student or staff member reports having tested positive for COVID-19, school administrators or his/her designee should notify the local health department to determine what steps are needed for the school community.

      Will there be measures put in place to make sure that those who have been quarantined are healthy before returning to school?

      The district has established protocols and procedures, in consultation with the local health department(s), about the requirements for determining when individuals, particularly students, who screened positive for COVID-19 symptoms can return to the in-person learning environment at school. This protocol includes:

      • Documentation from a health care provider following evaluation
      • Negative COVID-19 diagnostic test result
      • Symptom resolution, or if COVID-19 positive, release from isolation

      The district will refer to the Department of Health regarding protocols and policies for faculty and staff seeking to return to work after a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19 or after the faculty or staff member had close or proximate contact with a person with COVID-19.

      The district requires that individuals who were exposed to the COVID-19 virus complete quarantine and have not developed symptoms before returning to in-person learning. The discharge of an individual from quarantine and return to school will be conducted in coordination with the local health department.

      Will there be an isolation area in case someone has symptoms during the school day?

      The district requires students with a temperature, signs of illness, and/or a positive response to the questionnaire to be sent directly to a dedicated isolation area where students are supervised, prior to being picked up or otherwise sent home. Students will be supervised in the isolation area while awaiting transport home and will be separated by at least 6 feet. Students will be escorted from the isolation area to their parent/guardian. Students will be referred to a healthcare provider and provided resources on COVID-19 testing.

      How would schools address building safety i.e. prevent intruders, etc. if doors are being kept open so people don’t have to touch them?

      Opening exterior doors to allow access/exiting at the buildings in a touch free manner will only be done at drop off and dismissal times. A staff member will need to be present at these times to monitor who is entering the building. After the drop off/pick up items the building will operate normally with the exterior doors locked. All visitors will have to go to the main entrance. As per guidelines, visitors will not be allowed to enter the building unless there is an emergency.

      How often will bathrooms/classrooms be cleaned?

      The District’s custodial staff have been trained on proper cleaning procedures and disinfecting schedules. Each building will be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized every day. Common areas and bathrooms will be routinely cleaned and sanitized throughout the day. Schools must maintain logs that include the date, time, and scope of cleaning and disinfection in a facility or area

      At what point would a school or the district have to close if multiple people are diagnosed with coronavirus? 

      Guided by New York State Department of Health recommendations, the district will keep Albany County Department of Health apprised of all possible cases and any decisions for closure will follow the guidance of Albany County Department of Health.  

      Will I be notified if a child in my child’s classroom gets the coronavirus? How soon will I know?

      Yes, you will be promptly notified in accordance with guidance the district receives from the Albany County Department of Health.

      It was mentioned that our students will be physically distanced AND wearing masks. What is the rationale behind this when only one is required?

      We are taking additional precautions to ensure the safety of our students and staff.

      Mental Health & Wellness

      What sort of mental health/emotional support will be readily available to all students on a more extensive than usual basis upon the students’ and staff members’ return?

      We have a structure in place in every building which allows key counseling staff to sit with administrators and discuss the needs of various students. K-12 Mental Health Teams will continue to meet weekly, discussing the unique needs of our most vulnerable students, and developing action plans to encourage their connections to school and community resources.

      Special Education

      If we use a hybrid model of in-person and remote learning, would self-contained students be able to attend in-person daily due to their particular needs?

      Our plan includes bringing all K-12 special education students in every day. 

      If remote learning again becomes a reality, how will record keeping for special education students take place to ensure that goals are actually being addressed and regression is not taking place?

      All IEPs have been constructed to reflect in-person sessions/services. If our district goes to remote learning, we will carry out the IEP to the greatest extent possible. More specifically, providers will progress monitor all goals on the current IEP and update progress reports as scheduled. We will let the data collected drive the CSE’s decision related to any IEP amendments. 

      If the district has to go to remote learning, how will the district provide related services for students as outlined in their IEPs?

      If the district has to go to remote learning for all, we will work extensively to carry out IEPs to the greatest extent possible. Our providers will work with families to determine what delivery methods work best for them.

      When will the resource room be scheduled?

      This will look different based on grade level. Elementary students will have resource room during the 2.5 hours of supplemental instruction time. Jr. High students and high school students will have time built into their schedules. 

      If my students receive group services (ex: speech group), how will they be implemented safely? 

      We are successfully doing this now in our Extended School Year program. We have reduced the group size to three students and they are able to maintain social distancing throughout the session (6 ft. apart). No items used during the sessions are shared. If books are used during a session, they are sanitized prior to the next session.

      Will my student leave their classroom to go to the therapy room?

      In some instances, students will leave their classroom settings for therapies while following all district protocols.

      If close contact is required, will therapists wear gloves and face shields in addition to masks?

      Yes, our therapists are currently equipped with gloves, masks, face shields, and gowns to ensure the safety of students and staff. 

      School Buildings

      What kind of filtration upgrades will be made to the schools? 

      Guth DeConzo Engineers, supported by a NYSERDA grant, did a school analysis focusing on COVID safe Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) improvements. As a result, we will be installing MERV 13 filters which are recommended to combat COVID-19 virus transmission. 

      What will bathrooms be like?

      Restroom social distancing will be ensured through making fixtures that are too close together without proper dividers are unavailable for use. A physical barrier will not allow access to fixtures that are not 6 feet apart without barriers. After the bathrooms have been properly set up for distancing we will review to see if we have been able to maintain the proper amount of toilet fixtures. Where possible barriers will be installed to maintain fixtures and proper signage will be installed in the bathrooms.

      Touch free paper towel dispensers are currently in use within the NCCSD. Where hand dryers have been installed they will be deactivated and touch free paper towel dispensers installed.

      Will school buildings be open after school for clubs, scouts, recreational basketball, etc.?

      As our priority is student safety, the buildings will be far less accessible for groups of students, due to our cleaning protocols, before and after school. Any in-person activities that are not district sponsored will not be permitted for the 2020-21 school year.

      Lunch/Meals

      How will students eat lunch in a manner that is safe for both students and staff?

      • For students on-site, meals will be provided while maintaining appropriate social distancing between students. Students do not need to wear face coverings when seated and eating so long as they are appropriately socially distanced.
      • The district will ensure social distancing between individuals while eating.
      • Meals may be served in alternate areas (e.g., classrooms) or in staggered meal periods to ensure social distancing and proper cleaning and disinfection between students.
      • The sharing of food and beverages is prohibited, unless individuals are members of the same household.
      • Adequate space will be reserved for students, faculty, and staff to observe social distancing while eating meals.

      If students are eating in the classrooms, what will be done to keep the students who have food allergies safe? 

      In order to protect the safety of all students, all of our classrooms will be nut free during the period of the school year that students are required to have lunch in their classrooms. Parents of students with food allergies who are participating in the school meal programs must work with their child’s school nurse, food service director and cafeteria kitchen supervisor. 

      Where will lunch be held and will my children be allowed to bring in peanut products for lunch time?

      Lunch for elementary school students will be in the classrooms. All elementary classrooms will be nut free. Grades 7-12 will be “grab and go” style and where they will eat is still to be determined. 

      If students eat lunch in their classrooms, will classrooms continue to be nut free?

      In order to protect the safety of all students, all of our classrooms will be nut free during the period of the school year that students are required to have lunch in their classrooms. 

      Will students be allowed and monitored by staff to wash their hands with soap and water before and after lunch?

      Students and staff will be regularly washing their hands when in school. This will include before eating anything (i.e. breakfast, snack and lunch), after using the bathroom and any other time deemed necessary (i.e. sneezing, etc.). If they go outside to the playground, the recommendation is to have students wash their hands before going outside and again when returning inside. 

      How will students pay for lunch if their food is going to be delivered to the classroom?

      We will not be using keypads in the classroom. Meal rosters will be used and handled by adults as part of the meal ordering and receiving system.  We are also looking at a new point of sale system that may give us other options for meal ordering and accounting.

      If we decided to keep our child home to learn remotely, can we still receive meals from the district?

      Yes, students who are learning remotely can still receive meals from the district. The location and time for pick up is still to be determined. Meals can be picked up on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. On Monday’s and Wednesday’s, families will pick up two breakfasts/lunches.

      Music & Arts

      How would band/orchestra and lessons work at each level? 

      More information will be provided soon. The New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) has released recommendations that advise schools to plan safely for all music instruction. 

      What will chorus look like at each level?

      More information will be provided soon. NYSSMA recommendations will guide planning for all music instruction. 

      Will the students K-12 have access to music and art education and will it be provided by their current teachers?

      More information will be provided soon. 

      Will all after school clubs, performing groups, and sports be postponed until we can resume school with a “normal” schedule?

      More information will be provided soon.

      Sports/Physical Education

      For the high school students who are doing remote learning on some days of the week or for students that are planning to do 100% remote learning, how will that affect their participation in sports? 

      Students will be able to participate in athletics no matter what option they choose for learning. 

      Will they need to come to school on the days they are learning remotely from home for practices/games? 

      Students will need to come to school for scheduled practices at their designated time regardless of where or when they received their instruction that day. Further information on this process will be available when athletics have been approved to begin.

      How can fall sports be played while maintaining 6 feet distance when kids are huddled around the ball and in physical contact with each other? 

      The start of fall sports have been delayed until September 21 to allow for more time to address which sports can begin safely or if they need to be postponed until later in the year.

      What will physical education classes look like?

      Whenever possible students will utilize outside space for physical education instruction. We will adhere to 12 feet between students when engaging in vigorous physical activity.

      Before and After School Care

      Will CYC still be offered before and after school?

      The district has a strong partnership with the Colonie Youth Center (CYC), which will be offering childcare opportunities. 

      We are currently working with CYC to develop before and after school care programs for the 2020-2021 school year. More information will be made available in mid-August.

      CYC will be responsible for social distancing, PPE usage, cleaning and disinfection requirements, as well as limiting the risk of COVID-19 transmission. CYC can be reached at www.colonieyouthcenter.org or 518-438-9596.  

      If I have a student in Grades 4-6, will the afterschool program take place at the jr. high where they will be or will the students be bussed to their elementary school for aftercare?  

      This is still being determined. Since we did not previously have a CYC program at the jr. high building, it needs to go through an approval process with the state. CYC has filed an application and we are trying to fast track this.

      Other

      Will there be a travel policy for staff/students/families for future breaks and required quarantine?

      All staff, students and families will be required to follow the New York State guidance in regards to travel procedures and be aware of what states are listed as “hot spots.”

      Is there any plan to keep track of families/children who are returning from weekend trips or vacations to hot zones or any kind of air travel? 

      All families will be required to follow the New York State guidance in regards to travel procedures and be aware of what states are listed as “hot spots.”

      Are we still looking at a return date of Sept. 10?

      There is the potential that we will use all of our Superintendent’s Conference Days at the beginning of the year, pushing our first day to Sept. 14. This decision will be made and shared at the PAC meeting on Thursday, August 6. However, this could change at any time based on decisions made by Governor Cuomo.

      Is it still the district’s plan to have the 6-8 Middle School open in the Fall of 2021? 

      At this time, it is still the district’s plan to open the Middle School in the Fall of 2021. However, this decision will ultimately be made based on conditions related to the pandemic. 

      Will there be any changes to holidays or weeks off for vacation?

      We do not anticipate any changes at this point.