Frequently Asked Questions
New York required all school districts to propose a reopening plan that includes models for in-person instruction, fully-virtual instruction and a hybrid of in-person and virtual instruction, with each following the NYS Department of Health Guidelines, NYSED Guidelines for Reopening and the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control Prevention.
We know families have a lot of questions and concerns, and we hope to address many of them below. We will continue to update the FAQs as more information becomes available. We are still working out the details on what a typical day of instruction for in-person and remote learning will look like and will share those details as soon as possible. If you have a question specific to your child that is not answered here, please reach out to your child’s building principal.
If you missed one of the district's three parent forums, which answered many questions families' submitted, the Aug. 14 forum is available to view.
Questions are grouped according to the topics included in the District Reopening Plan. The links below will take you to topic-specific sections.
Communication/Family and Community Engagement
Q: How will parents be notified if the school needs to shift to fully remote learning?
A: The district will use existing internal and external communications channels to notify staff, students and families/caregivers about in-person, remote and hybrid school schedules with as much advance notice as possible. The district will share important news on its website and via SchoolMessenger, which delivers emails, text messages (if subscribed) and phone calls to all families and staff in the district.
Q: Will I be notified if there is a suspected or confirmed COVID case, or quarantine, within the school community?
A: In the event that a student or staff member is sick or symptomatic, notification to potentially exposed individuals will occur pursuant to the state’s contact tracing protocols as implemented by the local health department. Notification to the wider community will occur only under the direction of local health officials.
Q: How will I communicate with my child/ren’s teachers during remote learning?
A: The district will provide students and their families with multiple ways to contact schools and teachers during remote learning, including email, phone, and google classroom.
Q: Who should I contact if I have questions about the district’s reopening plan or health and safety protocols?
A: The district’s COVID-19 Coordinator is Assistant Superintendent Peter Reyes. Parents can contact Mr. Reyes at 315-445-8300. For building-specific questions, parents can contact the following individuals:
High School: Paul Gasparini, Principal, email@example.com, 315-445-8340
Middle School: Andy Eldridge, Principal, firstname.lastname@example.org, 315-445-8360
Jamesville Elementary School: Marcy Baker, Principal, email@example.com, 315-445-8460
Moses DeWitt Elementary School: Mary Sylvester, Principal, firstname.lastname@example.org, 315-445-8370
Tecumseh Elementary School: Takinma Killins, Principal, email@example.com, 315-445-8320
Q: Who should I contact if I need reopening resources translated into another language?
A: Contact Tish Hauser, firstname.lastname@example.org or 315-445-8304.
Health & Safety
Q. Are masks required?
A: Yes. Students, staff and visitors to our schools will be expected to wear face coverings at all times, indoors and outside, including on the school bus and in classrooms. Students will be allowed to remove face coverings during meals and for short breaks so long as they maintain appropriate social distance. Students who are unable to medically tolerate a face covering will not be required to wear one. Parents/guardians should contact their child’s school principal or Director of Pupil Personnel Services Tracey Menapace (315-445-8380 or email@example.com) so we can coordinate accommodations.
Q: What is an acceptable face covering?
A: Cloth face masks that cover both the nose and mouth that include, but are not limited to, homemade sewn masks, "quick cut" masks and bandanas are acceptable. Surgical masks are also acceptable. More information about masks and mask care can be found at the Centers for Disease Control website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/how-to-wear-cloth-face-coverings.html
Q: Will masks be provided to students and staff?
A: Face coverings and related necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) will be provided to students and staff, if needed, at no cost. Staff and students are allowed and encouraged to use their own acceptable face covering.
Q: Can face shields be used in place of masks?
A: Face shields may be used by some school staff, but they are to be worn in addition to face masks, not in place of them.
Q: Are students required to wear masks in the classroom?
A: Students will be expected to wear face coverings at all times, indoors and outside, including on the school bus and in classrooms, even when six-foot physical distancing is possible. Teachers are aware of the challenges associated with wearing a mask and will build in periodic mask breaks.
Q: What happens if a student refuses to wear a mask?
A: Just as any other instance in which a student refuses to follow school rules, teachers and other staff will work toward compliance with the student.
Q: What are parents required to do to screen children’s health before school each day?
A: Parents/guardians will be responsible for checking each child’s health before school each day. If a child presents with any of the following, they should be kept home from school:
Temperature above 100.0 degrees F
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Chills (with or without repeated shaking)
New loss of taste or smell
Please note that this screening is in addition to other conditions that should preclude students from attending school (e.g., pink eye, vomiting) or any situation in which a child appears not to be well enough to participate in the activities of the school day.
In addition to the parents’/guardians’ screenings, students will have their temperature checked each day at the school entrance, and at least once per week families will be asked to complete and submit a written screening questionnaire in addition to having their child’s temperature checked.
Q: How is the health of staff being screened?
A: For the majority of staff, the district will utilize an app to complete a daily screening questionnaire. Information from the app will be received by the staff member’s direct supervisor. Staff without access to technology will be asked to sign in each day after acknowledging that they have read and answered the daily screening questions.
Q: Will the district be keeping records of student or staff health information?
A: The district will keep a record of whether or not students or staff were cleared/not cleared to enter the building. Specific health data, such as temperatures, will not be kept.
Q: What happens if a student’s health screening has not been submitted? Will they be permitted to enter the building?
A: Screening student health at home before the school day is only one tool the district will use to ensure that students are well enough to attend school. The district will be taking student temperatures at the school entrances, and if a student has a temperature of 100°F or greater, they will be sent to the nurse’s office and wait in an isolated area while the nurse calls a parent/guardian to pick the student up.
Q: What do I do if my child is showing COVID-19 symptoms?
A: Parents are encouraged to contact your child’s doctor if your child is showing symptoms of COVID-19. Your child should not attend school if they are displaying these symptoms.
Q: If my child exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, how long will they need to be out of school?
A: 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 stating they are clear to return to school; and
- Negative COVID-19 diagnostic test result, and
- Symptom free.
Jamesville-DeWitt follows CDC and DOH guidance for allowing a student to return to school after being diagnosed with COVID-19:
- With release from isolation documentation provided by Department of Health.
- After at least 10 days since onset of symptoms
Q: What should my child do if they feel sick during the school day? Will I be notified?
A: If a student feels sick during the school day, they will report to the nurse’s office for evaluation and potentially be directed to a supervised isolation area prior to being picked up or otherwise sent home.
Q: What is the protocol if there is a positive or suspected case of COVID-19 in the school?
A: The district will notify the state and local health department immediately upon being informed of any positive COVID-19 diagnostic test result by an individual within school facilities or on school grounds, including students, faculty, staff and visitors of any of our schools.
To assist the local health department with tracing the transmission of COVID-19, the district has a plan to trace all contacts of exposed individuals in accordance with protocols, training and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program.
Confidentiality must be maintained as required by federal and state laws and regulations. School staff will not try to determine who is to be excluded from school based on contact without guidance and direction from the local health department.
Q: What should I do if I have traveled internationally or from a state with widespread community transmission of COVID-19 per the New York State Travel Advisory in the past 14 days?
A: Executive Order 205 requires all travelers coming from states with significant rates of COVID-19 to quarantine for a 14-day period from the time of their last contact with that state. The list of states that meet the criteria for required quarantine can be found at https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-travel-advisory
Q: My child or a member of my family is considered to be high-risk for COVID-19. What are my options?
A: We recognize that some students and staff members are at an increased risk for severe COVID-19 illness, live with a person who is at an increased risk or simply do not feel comfortable returning to an in-person educational environment. It is our goal that these individuals are able to safely participate in educational activities.
Parents of children that are more at risk of COVID-19 should speak with their child’s doctor and/or medical professional(s) to determine the best academic and service options for their child. Staff should contact Mr. Peter Reyes, Assistant Superintendent, if they have conditions that put them at an increased risk of COVID-19. Students who have family members who are in high risk groups may also need to attend school remotely. If a child is unable to return to in-person instruction this fall, remote academic instruction and related services will be provided to meet the individualized education program (IEP) and/or instructional program to the greatest extent possible.
Q: Will testing for COVID-19 be conducted at school?
A: In the event that testing will need to be conducted at the school, the district will work with the local health department to support implementation.
Q: Will schools be conducting contact tracing if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19?
A: The district will participate in contact tracing protocols as implemented by the local health department. We assist public health departments in knowing who may have had contact at school with a confirmed case by:
Keeping accurate attendance records of students and staff members;
Ensuring student schedules are up to date;
Keeping a log of any visitors which includes date, time and where in the school they visited; and
Assisting local health departments in tracing all contacts of the individual at school in accordance with the protocol, training, and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program.
Maintaining confidentiality as required by federal and state laws and regulations.
Q: What are the district’s plans for cleaning and disinfecting school buildings?
A: The district will ensure adherence to hygiene and cleaning and disinfection requirements as advised by the CDC and DOH. Regular cleaning and disinfection of the facilities will occur, including more frequent cleaning and disinfection for high-risk and frequently touched surfaces. Cleaning and disinfection will be rigorous and ongoing and will occur at least daily, or more frequently as needed.
Q: Will fire drills and lockdown drills still be conducted? What will be the process for maintaining social distancing?
A: 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. Drills will ensure all students have in-person instruction and practice. Evacuation drills will be conducted on a staggered schedule on a similar day ensuring that all students are provided opportunities to practice. Lockdown drills will be conducted without hiding or sheltering. Safely sheltering in place will be taught and modeled. In the event of an emergency, priority will be given to getting to safety and not social distancing.
Q: Will outside visitors be permitted into school buildings?
A: Visitors to our schools will be limited. Teacher-Parent communication will occur via phone, Zoom or other technology, and when dropping off an item for a student, individuals will ring the doorbell to notify the school secretary that an item is being dropped off, sign the log and exit the area. The school secretary will then retrieve the item.
Delivery people will be prohibited from entering the school. Smaller deliveries from UPS, FedEx and mail deliveries will be left outside the school, and the school secretary will retrieve the items. The custodian will accept larger deliveries away from the general school operations.
When possible, repairmen or service providers will access the building after school hours supervised by our custodians. Individuals representing agencies that must enter a building during the school day, such as CPS, will be admitted into the school by the school secretary, who will ask the proper COVID-19 screening questions and take the person’s temperature. The individual will sign the visitor log. If determined during the screening process that the visitor is deemed to be lacking necessary face coverings, the district will provide such face coverings. The appropriate staff member will escort individuals who must enter the building beyond the office.
Q: Will there be plastic barriers at any school building locations?
A: Plastic barriers will be used in some classrooms and in the cafeteria. Barriers will be used in addition to face coverings.
Q: What is the school district doing about getting clean airflow into classrooms?
A: Upon reopening, the district plans to increase ventilation with outdoor air to the greatest extent possible (e.g., opening windows and doors) while maintaining health and safety protocols, particularly for younger students. Every supply air vent district-wide is run in the 100% open outside-air position, and the highest-rated MERV (minimum efficiency reporting value) filters on hand will be utilized when equipment is no longer able to run 100% outside air. Some classroom univents handle MERV 8, all other equipment MERV 13. Exhaust ventilation systems district-wide will run 16 hours per day and HEPA filtration will be provided in health offices via a portable device.
Q: How big will the class sizes be for in-person instruction?
A: Class size will reflect the need to ensure that students’ desks/seats are positioned no less than six feet apart. Some instruction may require students and teachers to be less than six feet apart. In those instances, face coverings will be required.
Q: How will desks be arranged in the classrooms? Will students be facing each other or facing forward?
A: Desks will be arranged in classrooms to ensure that students are positioned no less than six feet apart while seated. Desks will be turned to face the same direction in all rooms.
Q: Will the bathroom capacity be limited?
A: The district will implement practices to ensure that social distance can be maintained in communal bathrooms by limiting bathroom use to 1-2 students at a time.
Q: Will students still use cubbies? Lockers?
A: Lockers will not be used. Cubbies in classrooms may be used, but teachers will ensure social distancing is maintained by controlling when students are allowed to gather or store their belongings.
Q: How will school supplies that are typically shared be handled?
A: To the greatest extent possible, students will not share school supplies. Classrooms will be supplied with alcohol-based wipes that can be used to clean surfaces or objects after use.
Q: How is the district ensuring that any changes to its facilities are in compliance with fire code and other regulations?
A: All spaces to be occupied by school students and staff must meet the requirements of the 2020 New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code and the State Energy Conservation Code. The district will work with OCM BOCES Health and Safety Coordinator to ensure compliance with these codes.
Q: Will students and staff have access to hand sanitizer?
A: Yes. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers (60% alcohol or greater) will be available in classrooms and common areas in each school and facility and near high-touch surfaces, using touch free dispensers. In addition, classrooms will be equipped with refillable “buckets” of wipes containing at least 70% alcohol. These wipes are adequate for both hand sanitizing and environmental cleaning/disinfecting as necessary, including electronic equipment.
Parents may opt their child out of using alcohol-based hand sanitizer while at school. To do so, please send a written notice to your child’s school.
Q: Will students and staff have access to water fountains?
A: The district will ensure that students and staff have access to drinking water during the school day. Bottle-filler stations will be installed in each building.
Q: Will lunches need to be brought to school every day? Or will they be provided? Will hot meals still be available?
A: School meals will continue to be available to all students, including those attending school in-person and those learning remotely. Students may also bring lunches from home. The district’s Child Nutrition plan details how and when meals will be available and delivered.
Q: Where will students eat breakfast and lunch?
A: Elementary students will eat breakfast and lunch in their classrooms. Middle school and high school students will eat in the cafeteria with social distancing requirements.
Q: How will students pay for their meals?
A: The district uses the MySchoolBucks point of sale program to manage lunch accounts. If you need assistance with the MySchoolBucks program, contact the MySchoolBucks Parent Support Line by calling 1-855-832-5226.
Q: What hygiene practices will keep students safe during meals?
A: Students will be required to perform hand hygiene before and after eating. Students do not need to wear face coverings when seated and eating as long as they are appropriately socially distanced. The Child Nutrition section of the reopening plan addresses hygiene and cleaning practices that will be put into place to keep students safe during meals.
Q: Will meals be provided to those participating in remote learning?
A: Yes. The district will provide two meals each day, Monday through Friday, for students enrolled in the SFA. Grab and go breakfast and lunch will be available from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Jamesville-DeWitt High School, 6485 Edinger Dr., DeWitt. If families are unable to pick up at the locations and times provided, email firstname.lastname@example.org to make arrangements for meals.
Q: Will bus transportation still be provided? Are there any changes to who can ride the bus to and from school?
A: Yes, bus transportation will be available. All students are entitled to transportation by their home district to the extent required by law. Transportation departments do not have the ability or the right to deny transportation for children who are in foster care, homeless or attend private or charter schools. Parents who may have missed the deadline to request out-of-district transportation due to a reasonable excuse may file a 310 appeal with the Commissioner of Education.
Q: Will social distancing be enforced on buses?
A: Students, drivers and staff should maintain appropriate social distancing to the extent practicable on the school bus. Members of the same household may be seated within six feet of each other. To reduce density on buses, parents are encouraged to drive their children to school.
Q: Will masks be required on the bus?
A: Students, drivers and staff must wear acceptable face coverings at all times on school transportation (e.g., entering, exiting, and seated). If students need a face covering, they will be provided with one by the driver prior to entering the vehicle. Students whose physical or mental health would be impaired by wearing a face covering are not required to do so, but must be appropriately socially distanced.
Q: Will students’ temperatures be checked before entering the bus?
A: The district is asking parents/guardians to take their children’s temperatures daily and only send children to school when they are symptom free. Students will then have their temperature checked each day at the entrance to school.
Q: How many students will be on a bus?
A: Students will be required to social distance on the bus to the extent practicable; however, members of the same household may sit together on the bus. Therefore, the number of students on each bus may vary, from 20 to 30.
Q: How many students will be in each seat?
A: Students must sit one to a seat unless they are members of the same household. Students will be assigned seats according to their stop location to help limit students passing by each other.
Q: Will the district be adding additional buses to reduce bus capacity to 50 percent?
A: As needed.
Q: What will be the bus schedule?
A: Transportation schedules will be communicated to parents with the back-to-school mailing. Parents with questions or concerns about their child’s bus schedule may contact Ms. Jenn Palmer, Director of Transportation, 315-445-8388, email@example.com.
Q: Will there be transportation after school?
A: No, at this time there will be no after school events.
Q: Can I drop off my child(ren) in the morning, but use the bus after school?
A: Parents and legal guardians are encouraged to drop off or walk students to school to reduce density on buses. If your child only needs one-way transportation to or from school, please contact Ms. Jenn Palmer, Director of Transportation, 315-445-8388, firstname.lastname@example.org with that information.
Q: Can my child be dropped off or picked up at different locations during the week?
A: Yes. Arrangements should be made with your building principal and the director of transportation.
Q: What is the schedule for cleaning the buses?
A: Drivers will be required to wipe down all high-touch surfaces between routes and deep cleaning of all bus surfaces will be done once daily by staff using a hydrogen peroxide solution.
Q: Will hand sanitizer be available on the bus?
A: No, school buses will not be equipped with hand sanitizer due to its combustible composition and potential liability to the carrier or district. School bus drivers, monitors and attendants must not carry personal bottles of hand sanitizer with them on school buses.
Q: How will social distancing be enforced when students are getting on and off the bus at school?
A: Students embarking and disembarking buses will be required to remain socially distant to the extent possible and wear a face covering. Students will be assigned seats according to their stop location to help limit students passing by each other.
Q: What supports are available for my child’s mental health needs?
A: The social emotional well-being of students and staff is a priority for the district, especially throughout this pandemic. The district’s plan details how district staff will support our school community and ensure students’ social emotional learning.
Q: How can a student reach out to counselors if stressed?
A: High school and middle school students who are in distress or in need of social and emotional support may drop in or make an appointment with their school counselor or social worker. Elementary students should talk to their teacher, who will make arrangements to see the school counselor or social worker. Students participating in remote instruction will be able to contact counselors or social workers via email or phone. Counselors will be available to meet with students remotely via zoom.
Q: What is the district doing to support the mental health of its staff?
A: The district has made available resources and referrals to address mental health, behavioral, and emotional needs of faculty, and staff when school reopens for in-person instructions. This includes access to the Employee Assistance Program.
Q: Will students entering new school buildings have some form of orientation or tours ahead of time?
A: The district always looks forward to welcoming new or rising students into its buildings. Plans are being made to introduce kindergarten, fifth grade, and ninth grade students to their respective buildings. More information can be obtained from the building principal.
Q. What are the drop-off and pickup times for in-person instruction?
A: With the need to socially distance on school buses we anticipate a greater number of parents dropping off and picking up students from school. Your patience is appreciated as we adjust to new traffic patterns.
Elementary drop off
Elementary pick up
Middle school drop off
Middle school pick up
High school drop off
High school pick up
Q. Can students arrive at school before classes begin? If so, where will they go?
A: Staff will be taking students’ temperatures as they enter the building. It is necessary to drop off students within the scheduled time.
Q. How will students be grouped by grade level or class during the school day?
A: To the greatest extent possible, students will remain with one cohort throughout the day. This becomes more challenging for older students.
Q: Will elementary students have recess? If so, will recess be outside if conditions permit?
A: Elementary students will still participate in recess. Elementary principals will work with staff to develop alternative recess activities that abide by social distancing guidelines. Face coverings will be required. Playground equipment will be cleaned per CDC guidance.
Q: Will students still have assemblies? Field trips?
A: Pursuant to NYSDOH guidance, schools must ensure that appropriate social distancing is maintained between individuals while in school facilities and on school grounds (inclusive of students, faculty, and staff). Because of these guidelines, assemblies, field trips and other large-group activities will not be held at this time.
Q. Will students stay in the same classroom all day?
A: School schedules for the reopening of school will be designed to minimize the movement of students within the building. 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.
Q: How will PE work for all grades?
A: Students will still participate in Physical Education classes. Whenever possible, students will use outside space for physical education instruction. We will adhere to NYSDOH guidelines of maintaining 12 feet between students when engaging in physical activity. Masks will be required at all times.
Q: Will fourth-grade students have band and orchestra lessons?
A: Fourth-grade band and orchestra lessons will not begin at the start of the school year. We will revisit this in early November.
Q: Is the district doing anything to reduce congestion in hallways or lobby areas?
A: To adhere to NYSDOH and NYSED social distance guidelines, the movement of students will be minimized or staggered. Lockers will not be used. Floors are marked with tape to help maintain flow and minimize reduced social distancing.
Q. How will the district decide if there is a need to go fully remote? Will that decision be made districtwide, or on a more individual basis (school, class, etc.)?
A: The district will collaborate with the local health department to determine the parameters, conditions or metrics (e.g., increased absenteeism or increased illness in the school community) that will serve as early warning signs that positive COVID-19 cases may be increasing beyond an acceptable level.
At a minimum, schools will close in accordance with direction from the governor and New York State Department of Health if the 7-day rolling regional average of the infection rate rises above 9%. In that instance, schools throughout the region must wait until the 14-day average is below 5% before reopening, and permission must be grated from the local department of health and other governing agencies.
The district will be notified by the local department of health regarding the status of infection rates. The district reserves the right to modify operations prior to closing to help mitigate a rise in cases. The district will consult its school physician and the local health department when making such decisions.
Q: Will athletics, clubs or extracurricular activities still be offered?
A: The district is exploring the types of activities that can be conducted in a safe environment with appropriate social distancing protocols.
Interscholastic sports have been delayed by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) until at least Sept. 21. Additional guidance on athletic activities is forthcoming. When it becomes available, the district will communicate that information to families.
Q. Are before- and after-school programs available?
A: The district is working with the Town of DeWitt to establish a before- and after-school program.
Q: Will music and drama performances still take place?
A: In order for the district to adhere to NYSDOH and NYSED guidance, in-person group gatherings will not be permitted.
Q: Will my child be able to travel to other schools to participate in events?
A: The district will not be offering any events or school activities at this time that would involve students traveling to other schools. The only exception to this would be Career and Technical Education or other programs through BOCES, including special education programs/services, that are related to a students instructional program. When additional information relating to athletic programs becomes available, the district will communicate it to families.
Attendance and Chronic Absenteeism
Q: How will a student be marked “absent,” “present” or “tardy” during remote learning?
A: There will be an expectation for daily attendance of all students. All attendance procedures will be in full effect whether students are in-person or remote. Teachers will take attendance and report in SchoolTool.
Q: Will I be notified if my child has been marked “absent” or “tardy” during remote learning?
A: Students who are chronically absent will receive the same follow-up (i.e., guidance, administration, pupil services team, child protective services) whether they are participating in in-person or remote instruction.
Technology and Connectivity
Q: What technology do we need to have at home to participate in remote learning?
A: A Chromebook and network connectivity is necessary. Students who do not have a computing device can request one by contacting your building principal or Mr. Phil Luckette, Technology Coordinator, email@example.com
Q: What resources, if any, will be provided to parents/guardians to help prepare them for the potential shift to online-only learning?
A: The district is working to create online tutorials. A help desk is available at the JDCSD Student and Parent Technology Request Help desk.
Q: Can my child borrow a device from the school?
A: Yes, contact your building principal or Mr. Phil Luckette, Techhnology Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: We do not have internet access at home. Can the school help?
A: Yes, contact your building principal or Mr. Pete Reyes, Assistant Superintendent, email@example.com.
Q: What do we do if my child’s school laptop breaks or stops working?
A: If a student’s laptop or device breaks or stops working, you should immediately notify your teacher or building principal so that they are aware of the situation and can direct you accordingly. A help desk is available at the JDCSD Student and Parent Technology Request Help desk.
Q: How can we get technology help from the school?
A: A help desk is available at the JDCSD Student and Parent Technology Request Help desk.
Q: How is the district ensuring student data privacy during remote learning?
A. The district has taken several steps to ensure student, teacher and administrator privacy during remote learning. A Data Protection Officer has been assigned by the district to oversee the enforcement of Ed Law 2d. Annual staff training has been designed and implemented. A complaint process has been defined and will be posted on the website.A Cybersecurity Incident Response Plan has been written. A Parent Bill of Rights has been posted on the website. The district has entered into a Data Sharing and Confidentiality Agreement with all vendors of programs that store or have access to student data. Each of these programs has been inventoried and a list will be available via the district website. A procedure has been established for teachers to request additional programs be added to the inventory.
Teaching and Learning
Q. How is the district preparing for remote instruction?
A: The district’s remote learning plan contains information about the learning platform used, communication tools, schedules and other helpful information.
Q: Will remote instruction in the fall be different from what it was in the spring? If so, how?
A: Data from the ThoughtExchange showed a need for a more robust and consistent approach to remote instruction. Expectations have been enhanced. More detail is included in the district’s remote learning plan.
Q: What platforms will be used for remote instruction?
A: Google classroom will be used for remote instruction, K-12.
Q. Are there any training sessions or resources for parents/guardians on the platforms students will be using?
A:The district is working to create online tutorials. As well, a help desk is available at the JDCSD Student and Parent Technology Request Help desk.
Q: How will students be held accountable for attendance and classwork?
A: There will be an expectation for daily attendance and full participation of all students. All attendance procedures will be in full effect whether students are in-person or remote.
Q. Is remote learning an option for families who do not want to send their child to in-person instruction?
A: Full time, remote learning with no in-person schooling is an option for families. Please contact your building principal or Mr. Pete Reyes, Assistant Superintendent, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. Will everyone have access to the remote learning resources, even if they are attending some form of in-person instruction?
A: The district has a plan for remote-only learning in the event the schools are shut down due a COVID-19 outbreak. Because of this, all students will have access to remote learning resources as needed.
Q: How will teachers communicate with students and families during remote instruction? How do I contact my child’s teacher if I have questions during the year?
A: Teachers are available to answer questions and provide support for students and families. Email is the preferred method of communication.
Q: How do I participate in remote learning if I don’t have internet access or a device?
A: This information was collected by survey during the summer. Please contact your building principal or Mr. Pete Reyes, Assistant Superintendent, email@example.com.
Q: Will my child still be able to attend their Career and Technical Education (CTE) program at BOCES?
A: Students will still attend Career and Technical Education or other programs through BOCES. Please see the BOCES reopening plan for more information on how CTE programs will be conducted.
Q. If we choose remote learning, do we have to stay with that learning model for the whole year?
A: Due to logistical constraints, we are asking families to commit to one model or another for at least 10 weeks.
Q. What is the difference between remote learning and homeschooling?
A: Remote learning is delivered by the school district for students who are enrolled in school, but are not attending in-person instruction. Instruction is provided by certified teachers in accordance with New York State Learning Standards. Parents who wish to homeschool their child must provide written notice to the school district, and submit an individualized home instruction plan, as well as quarterly reports and evaluations, to the district.
Q. How will students’ work be graded or evaluated?
A: Student work will be evaluated by classroom teachers. Teachers will record progress reports and grades, which will be available through SchoolTool. Interim progress reports, and report cards, will be sent home at the end of each quarter.
Q: How will struggling students receive help with their schoolwork?
A: Students and their parents are encouraged to contact their teachers with any concerns about schoolwork.
Q: Will students still take state exams (e.g., the 3-8 math and ELA assessments, Regents exams)?
A: Any grades 3-8 and Regents examinations required by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) will be made available to students in the appropriate grade level. If examinations are waived, the district will communicate that information to families.
Q: How will my child’s IEP be affected by remote learning?
A: The district will work with its committees on special education and preschool special education to ensure that students’ individualized education plans can be followed during both in-person and remote learning.
Q: Can my child still receive services such as occupational therapy, physical therapy or speech therapy remotely?
A:Yes, students who do not receive related services face to face will receive services via telehealth. Telehealth can be a combination of synchronous and asynchronous therapy. A student's schedule will be determined by the therapist once school resumes.
Q: Will my child still be transported to off-site programs?
A: Yes, J-D will transport students to BOCES. However, the student's program will be impacted by the number of days they are attending the high school. For students in CDOS or CTE these programs meet 5 days a week. All BOCES programs are 5 days per week. The high school counselors/teachers/administration must work with OCM BOCES to develop a plan to ensure the student has access to all curriculum in order to meet their program requirements as our students in CDOS and CTE will not be in our high school for 5 days weekly.
Q: If my child receives group services, how will they be implemented safely?
A: Group is identified on the IEP. Speech services are grouped in a 5:1 ratio. This means a maximum of 5. OT/PT maximum group is 3 as the ratio is 3:1. Resource is 5:1. Therapist and special education teachers must follow the districts social distancing protocols, wear masks and sanitize per JD district policy after each group. At this time, we would not discontinue the group, and it would remain on the IEP. If needed, a group could occur via google meet or Zoom. Per NYSED, the methods of delivery of services will be utilized to deliver special education programs and services to meet the needs of students with disabilities as they plan for various types of instructional models.
Q: What do I do if I need additional support for my special education student during remote learning? In-person instruction?
A: Parents should begin with their students' special education and classroom teachers. Should the parent need additional guidance or support they should reach out to their building principal and/or Office of Pupil Personnel Services, 315-445-8380.
Q: What do I do if I’m new to the district and my child needs special education services?
A: If new to the district you may contact your student's building principal or the Office of Pupil Personnel Services: Phone: 315.445.8380; Fax: 315.445.8407
- Tracey Menapace, Director Pupil Personnel Services, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ginger Holleran, Asst. Director Pupil Personnel Services/CSE Chairperson, email@example.com
- Mary Conroy,CSE Chairperson
- Debbie Kolod, Administrative Support/CSE
- Rachael Shute, Administrative Support/CPSE
Q: Will my child still be able to attend their special education program at BOCES?
A: Yes, BOCES center-based and school-based programs will be open 5 days per week.
Q: How will the district provide translations of reopening information for students and families?
A: The district will make every effort to ensure that communication to parents/legal guardians is in their preferred language and mode of communication. The district’s reopening plan and updates appear on the district website and can be translated into other languages by contacting Tish Hauser, firstname.lastname@example.org or 315-445-8304.
Q: How will instruction be provided to students who are English language learners?
A: The district will work to identify English language learners during the first 30 days of the school year. Instruction will be provided based on each student’s measured English language proficiency level.
Q: What do I do if I need additional support for my English language learner/multilingual learner during remote instruction? In-person instruction?
A: If an English language learner/multilingual learner needs additional support during remote instruction or in-person instruction, please reach out to their teacher or your building principal.
Q: Will substitute teachers be used during remote learning?
A: Substitute teachers that have completed necessary training on COVID-19 protocols may be used.
Q: Will all instruction be delivered by a certified teacher?
A: All teachers will hold valid and appropriate certificates for teaching assignment, except where otherwise allowable under the Commissioner’s regulations (e.g., incidental teaching) or education law.
Q: Will teachers and principals continue to be evaluated during this time?
A: Yes. All teachers and principals will continue to be evaluated pursuant to the district’s approved APPR plan.