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NSCSD Update Center


Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information for North Syracuse Central School District 


Daniel D. Bowles
Superintendent of Schools


T. (315) 218-2100
E. dbowles@nscsd.org

Important Links

  Off-Site Educational Resources
  Grab and Go Meals
  Summer Feeding Program
  Wellness Resources
  Food Help
  Childcare Options
  Chromebook Help
  NSCSD policy information
  Cleaning for Health
  Frequently Asked ?
  Symptoms
  What to do if you are sick
  NSCSD Workplace Safety Plan
  Grading Information
   
     

July 8, 2020
Committee Exploring School Re-Entry Options


Hello North Syracuse Central School District families and staff,

Although June has just ended, we are well into planning for the upcoming school year. As you know, this has been a challenging time as we sort through the guidelines, recommendations and logistics of COVID-19 and its impact on the North Syracuse Central School District. We continue to look for light at the end of the tunnel while facing the reality of the cancellation of large gatherings, most recently the New York State Fair.

First and foremost, I want to let you know that we are actively exploring options for the safe reopening of schools. Earlier this spring, the NSCSD formed a Re-Entry Committee with more than 100 stakeholders coming together virtually to formulate a plan. In order to explore all options in depth and best support student learning, the committee is divided into five sub-committees: Instructional Operations Planning, Proactive Infection Planning, Social and Emotional Wellness, Workplace Safety and Communications.

The committee will create a comprehensive plan for the safe re-entry of all students and staff. With things changing on an almost daily basis, and with concrete guidance still forthcoming, the work has been tremendous and complex. Because of some incredible volunteer leaders, teachers, parents and other staff, we have been able to make progress. We anticipate being able to present a draft plan to our Board of Education in early August.

To that end, we will soon be administering a survey to families and staff. In order to come up with a plan that considers our community’s needs, we must have your input. We are finalizing our survey questions and we will be putting the survey link out to the public as soon as possible. Please be sure to take the survey right away as we will have a tight time frame for analyzing feedback.

District leaders are also working collaboratively with a regional reopening group led by OCM BOCES. Through the group, all local and neighboring school districts have been sharing information and brainstorming solutions for reopening. We will continue to meet throughout the summer and work together to analyze the complex guidelines and recommendations given to us by federal, state and local officials.

I will be back in touch in the near future. In the meantime, please be on the lookout for our July District Dispatch. The newsletter gives more information about the Re-Entry Committee, back to school, summer projects and programs and more. My favorite piece of the newsletter however is the “look” at the most unique commencement ceremony of the Cicero-North Syracuse High School Class of 2020. My first graduating class as Superintendent of Schools for the North Syracuse Central School District…and likely the most memorable of all time.

Thank you for taking time to read this letter. Please stay well and enjoy the bright sunshine we are experiencing.

Sincerely,

Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
June 24, 2020
Re-Entry Planning

Dear NSCSD Parents,

I am writing to dispel any rumors regarding re-entry plans. At this time no decisions have been made regarding re-entry for the 2020-2021 school year. The District is currently awaiting additional guidance from the New York State Education Department, the Department of Health, and the Governor’s office in the upcoming weeks.

We will be communicating throughout the upcoming weeks to keep our NSCSD community informed as we receive additional guidance and formulate plans for a safe re-entry.

 

Sincerely,

Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools


June 10, 2020
Non-Instructional Staff to Return to Work


Thankfully, Central New York has met all of the metrics for returning to work on site.  These metrics have been established based on guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of State, and other public health experts.
 
·         Metric #1—Decline in Total Hospitalizations. Region must show a sustained decline in the three-day rolling average of total net hospitalizations (defined as the total number of people in the hospital on a given day) over the course of a 14-day period.
·         Metric #2—Decline in Deaths. Region must show a sustained decline in the three-day rolling average of daily hospital deaths over the course of a 14-day period.
·         Metric #3—New Hospitalizations. Region must experience fewer than 2 new hospitalizations per 100,000 residents, measured on a three-day rolling average. New hospitalizations include both new admissions and prior admissions subsequently confirmed as positive COVID cases.
·         Metric #4—Hospital Bed Capacity. Regions must have at least 30% of their hospital beds available.
·         Metric #5—ICU Bed Capacity. Regions must have at least 30% of their ICU beds available.
·         Metric #6—Diagnostic Testing Capacity. Average daily diagnostic testing over the past 7 days must be sufficient to conduct 30 tests per 1,000 residents per month.
·         Metric #7—Contact Tracing Capacity. Number of contact tracers in each region must meet thresholds set by the Department of Health, in collaboration with the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health and Vital Strategies.
 
Phase two includes these broad categories:
  • professional services
  • retail
  • administrative support (Offices)
  • finance and insurance
  • real estate/rentals and leasing
 
We believe that all of our non-instructional employees are covered by Phase 2.  Therefore, effective Tuesday June 16, 2020, all 11-month and 12-month non-instructional employees should report to work during their regularly scheduled hours. 
 
We have completed a Work Place Safety Plan as recommended by NYS to insure that we are prepared for your arrival back in the District.  We have attached it for your review.
   
Since we will all be working in buildings that will be occupied at a small fraction of their capacity most of our workspaces, we can maintain physical distancing (6 feet apart) without modification. For the limited amount of time that we will not be 6 feet apart or when we are away from our personal workspace, we will be required to wear masks. NSCSD will provide masks to any employee who needs one. Please review this brief video on basic PPE use https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xFY3aPF7E4
 
Upon arrival, each employee will be asked a few screening questions.  Our M&O department has the capability to maintain good hygiene and cleaning in accordance with CDC guidelines. In addition, they will provide additional cleaning materials and hand sanitizer to be used where necessary in shared spaces and on shared equipment.  We will provide each employee with a stylus that will allow them to push buttons on copiers without touching the screen or mechanical buttons.  Finally, for the few situations where staff members cannot be six feet apart for the majority of the time they are working in the office, we will work to stagger shifts, alternate days of working in the office and consider relocations to alternate spaces. Please work with your direct supervisor to discuss these alternatives.
 
Please know that if you have a medical condition that has compromised your immune system and made you vulnerable to COVID-19, we will certainly work with you to accommodate your special situation.  
 
Thank you for all of the hard work you have been doing over these past few months. Your efforts have successfully kept the district operating during the closure. 
 
Finally, we really look forward to seeing each of you again and to have our NSCSD family together (albeit 6 feet apart).
 
 
Dan Bowles
Superintendent of Schools
North Syracuse Central School District            
May 15, 2020
Superintendent's Letter With End of the Year and Grading Information

 
May 15, 2020
Superintendent's Letter to C-NS Class of 2020

Good afternoon C-NS Class of 2020 Families:
As you know, all school districts must comply with state and county government and health department regulations regarding the safety of holding large gatherings in light of COVID-19. Today, we were informed by the Marriott Downtown Syracuse and the Expo Center at the New York State Fairgrounds, that all events previously scheduled at their venues during the month of June have been cancelled. Consequently, the C-NS Senior Ball will not be permitted on the originally scheduled date of June 12. When the schools began to shut down, Wednesday, July 22 was preemptively scheduled as an alternate date. At this time, that date is still an option for our seniors. We will update our students and families of additional cancellations but we are hopeful that the senior ball will be able to take place in July.

We are working very hard to provide our seniors and their families with the opportunities they have earned and deserved. Due to the uncertainty of the next few months, our high school administration has been in constant collaboration with Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon, as well as other local school districts to plan a truly special, memorable and safe graduation event for our seniors. Once those plans are finalized, they will be shared out with students and families.

There will be information coming in regards to some special events for seniors taking place the week of June 8th.

Thank you and please stay well.

Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
April 30, 2020
New York State Education Department Shares Information for Supporting Learning

The New York State Education Department, Office of Special Education is sharing the following resource provided by the IRIS Center. Resources are provided for informational purposes only and do not constitute NYSED endorsement of any websites or other sources.  Please be aware that websites listed may change. The information provided is true and complete to the best of our knowledge.
 
The IRIS Center has created a new module specifically for parents titled Parents: Supporting Learning During the COVID-19 Pandemic.  This module offers practical tools and easy-to-implement strategies to help clarify what is and is not a parents role during school closure and provides information for parents on how to support their child’s learning and social emotional wellbeing. The IRIS Center, housed at the Peabody College Vanderbilt University, is funded through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).
April 17, 2020
Letter from Superintendent Bowles Regarding Grading

April 16, 2020
New York State School Closure Extended Through May 15

Dear Parents and Guardians,
In accordance with today’s executive order from New York State, all schools in the North Syracuse Central School District will remain closed through May 15, 2020. There will be no in-person classes until at least then, but remote learning will continue.

We know you are doing your best to support your child’s education throughout the school closure. We also know that this transition has been challenging and overwhelming at times.  As a District, we are appreciative of your commitment and efforts and we will continue to gather feedback to streamline and improve our process.

Be sure to check our website (www.nscsd.org/updates) dedicated to updating the community about this important health issue.
 
Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools


April 8, 2020
Letter to NSCSD 5-12 Families from Associate Superintendent for Teaching and Learning Leahey

Letter to NSCSD K-4 Families from Director of Elementary Education Stone

April 7, 2020
NSCSD School Closure Extended Through April 29

Dear Parents and Guardians,
In accordance with today’s executive order from New York State, all schools in the North Syracuse Central School District will remain closed through Wednesday, April 29, 2020. Additionally, this year’s Regents exams have been canceled by New York State due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Be sure to check our website (www.nscsd.org/updates) dedicated to updating the community about this important health issue.
 
Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
 


March 31, 2020
Letter to NSCSD Families from Superintendent Bowles

March 25, 2020
Letter to NSCSD Families and Staff from Superintendent Bowles

 
March 25, 2020
Student Testing Updates

As of 3/20/20 State testing is suspended for the following programs:
  • Grade 3-8 ELA
  • Grade 3-8 Math
  • Grade 4 and 8 Science
  • K-12 NYSESLAT
  • Grades 3-8 NYSAA
AP Exams (3/25/20)
  • Traditional face-to-face exam administrations will not take place. 
  • For the 2019–20 exam administration only, students can take a 45-minute online free-response exam at home. Educator-led development committees are currently selecting the exam questions that will be administered  
  • For each AP subject, there will be 2 different testing dates.
  • Any student already registered for an exam can choose to cancel at no charge.  
Colleges support this solution and are committed to ensuring that AP students receive the credit they have worked this year to earn.
 
March 20, 2020
NSCSD Grab and Go Meals Available at Clay Location Beginning Monday, March 23


On Monday, March 23, the North Syracuse Central School District’s grab and go meal program will provide a new distribution site in Clay. In order to provide meals to families unable to travel into Cicero or North Syracuse, the District will establish a site at Meltzer Park (8400 Stearns Rd.) in Clay.

North Syracuse Central School District Superintendent Daniel D. Bowles said, “We’ve heard from some families in Clay that it would be easier for them to have a meal site closer to their houses. Since we were previously providing two sites so close together at Cicero Elementary and C-NS High School, we decided that we could reach additional families by moving the C-NS site into Clay.”

Families that may previously have gone to C-NS for their grab and go meals, can now go to the program at Cicero Elementary School.

An additional change, since learning that the coronavirus can live on surfaces up to 72 hours, the grab and go program will take place Monday through Thursday. This will allow buses and school buildings to remain empty for the 72 hour period. Families coming for meals on Thursday will be permitted to take enough meals for the extra day if needed.

Grab and go breakfast and lunch meals are available at the following locations from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Monday through Thursday. Families can take up to two meals at a time per student. 

Families are asked to please bring a reusable bag if they will be taking multiple meals

Click here for location addresses. 
 
March 20, 2020
Superintendent's Update


Dear Parents, Guardians and Staff,

It is hard to believe it has been just a few days since I wrote to you with the news schools would be closing. It seems as though we’ve experienced several months’ worth of change in less than a week.

Before I begin, I want to take a moment to offer my sincere thanks to the staff and families in this District. We have come together in some incredible ways this week and have tackled tremendous challenges with grit and grace.

We have been fortunate enough to be able to lend thousands of Chromebooks to our students this week so that learning can continue at home. Please know that we do not expect you to become teachers in homeschooling your children. Rather, we are providing the tools so that students can access instruction online and stay engaged in learning. Click here to access our off-site education resources website.

Parent Tips for At-Home Learning:
  • Create a comfortable learning environment and establish a regular academic routine.
  • Make sure students have the necessary learning tools (pens, paper, books, devices, etc.) in one spot.
  • Establish regular communication with your students’ teacher(s) to check on their progress.
  • Talk to your student about their day and discuss their progress.  
Throughout the closure, teachers and counselors can be contacted through email. Please do not hesitate to reach out if support is needed.

For the students who borrowed a Chromebook and may be having a problem logging on, please email Helpline@nscsd.org. The email should include the student’s full name, school, grade and room number.

Once again, thank you to our staff and families for making a difficult week a bit easier. I am proud to let you know that our Grab and Go meal program has been a tremendous success with thousands of meals provided on a daily basis.

To the countless people who went above and beyond this week – you made a difference and I thank you tremendously.

Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
March 16, 2020
NSCSD Chromebook Lending Information for Students in Need of Devices


As you know, all schools in the North Syracuse Central School District will be closing from Tuesday, March 17 through Monday, April 13. In order to allow all students the opportunity to continue learning from home, the District is making a Chromebook available to any students who do not have adequate technology at home.
 
Chromebooks will be available for sign-out and pick-up at all schools in the District during the hours of 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 17; Wednesday, March 18; and Thursday, March 19.
 
Chromebooks must be signed out by Parents/guardians, who will need to go to the child’s school to sign-out/pick-up the devices and must show photo identification. If you have children in more than one building, you will have to go to each building to sign-out and pick-up a Chromebook.
 
Families that do not have internet available, Spectrum is providing free high-speed internet to households with students. Families can call (844) 488-8395 to enroll. Other wireless providers are also offering additional Wi-Fi hot spots and internet options in response to COVID-19. Click here for more information
 
Additional details will be made available tomorrow morning.

March 16, 2020
All Onondaga County Schools to Close at the End of the Day March 16

In accordance with Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon’s order from this morning, all North Syracuse Central Schools will close today at 4:00 p.m. The Onondaga County Health Department confirmed the first case of COVID-19 in Onondaga County.
 
Please know that the District has been preparing for this possibility and we have some important information to share with you during this uncertain time. 
 
School Closure and Event Cancellation
  • School buildings will close at 4:00 p.m. on March 16, 2020. Tonight’s YMCA program will continue through 6:00 p.m. Effective 3/17 all before/after school programs will cease until schools reopen.
  • Schools will be closed from Tuesday, March 17 through Monday, April 13. Classes will resume on Tuesday, April 14.
  • All afterschool activities and group field trips are cancelled immediately.
  • Tutoring for homebound students will end today.
  • Spring sports will not begin until at least April 14.
Meals for Students
  • Our food service department is preparing meals at Roxboro Road Middle School and KWS Bear Road Elementary School and food will be distributed to all buildings. Meals at Roxboro Road Middle School and at KWS Bear Road Elementary School will be provided in the schools’ lobby from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday – Friday. Food service staff at other schools will disburse food from a school bus in the parking lot from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Monday-Friday. Families may take up to two meals at a time.
  • The North Syracuse Education Association (NSEA) and many other community organizations are working together to ensure that the District is able to meet the needs of our families by potentially hosting a food pantry and providing a free dining site. Details will be announced as plans are completed.
  • The District’s Middle School Health Program is providing a list of businesses offering free meals to out-of-school students. The list is on their website at https://sites.google.com/view/nscsd-middle-school-health/.
 
Continuity of Learning
  • District staff are working on websites and other tools to ensure the continuity of learning. Our technology department has been and will continue to provide support needed for technology to work effectively.
  • Our teaching staff are working to gather materials and resources for online learning while students are out of school.
  • Additional information will be forthcoming regarding continued learning resources.
 
Access to Technology:
  • If your child needs a Chromebook to access online, district approved resources, students’ parents or guardians may sign out a District Chromebook at their child’s building of attendance from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 17 – Thursday, March 19. 
  • In the case where a family does not have internet access, alternative methods of delivering instruction and feedback to students will be utilized. 
  • Spectrum is providing free high-speed internet to households with students. Families can call (844) 488-8395 to enroll.
Be sure to check our website (www.nscsd.org/updates) dedicated to updating the community about this important health issue.
 
Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
 
March 14, 2020
Onondaga County Executive Closes all Onondaga County Schools March 23-April 13


On Saturday, March 14, Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon met with Onondaga County School Superintendents to discuss COVID-19 and the potential impact on schools. After the meeting, the county executive gave a news conference regarding the discussions
 
As per the order of the county executive, North Syracuse Central School District students, along with students from all Onondaga County schools, will be out of school from Monday March 23 - Monday April 13. 

We anticipate using the upcoming week to solidify plans to meet the needs of our students. More information will be forthcoming as we prepare for continuity of instruction for all of our students. 
 
We also recognize that some families may be uncomfortable sending your children to school.  Please know that we respect your rights as parents to choose what is best for your child. 

Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools

March 14, 2020
Spring Sports Season Delayed Until at Least April 14

March 13, 2020
NSCSD Changes School Event Schedule in Accordance with NYS Governor Regulations


On March 12, 2020, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the state will impose limits on mass gatherings, directing events with 500 or more individuals in attendance to be cancelled or postponed. The North Syracuse Central School District is making changes to previously scheduled events. All event changes are listed on the District's homepage at www.nscsd.org and will be reflected in the online calendar at www.nscsd.org/calendar

Spectrum to Provide free Internet for Homes that Need it Due to School Closure
March 12, 2020
Update from Superintendent Bowles


Dear North Syracuse Central School District families and staff,
I wanted to take a moment to provide a brief update regarding the District’s preparations around novel coronavirus 19 (COVID-19). While there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 within the North Syracuse Central School District or Onondaga County, we continue to prepare for that possibility.

The following items are key areas of focus:
Education and Communication
  • The District is maintaining direct two-way communication with the state and county departments of health regarding COVID-19 status and individual cases.
  • School nurses and superintendents have attended special training offered by Onondaga County.
  • District leadership has received up-to-date information and will be sharing critical pieces with staff.
  • The District has created this website for sharing updates about COVID-19.
Potential School Closure
  • The District will follow the direction of state and county health departments in deciding if schools need to be closed. If the Onondaga County Health Department confirms a case of COVID-19 in a District school, that building will initially be shut down for a minimum of 24-hours while an investigation is conducted to determine if an extended closure period is required. The Health Department will decide if additional buildings should be closed for an extended period of time.
  • Families should plan for the possibility of students being out of school for extended periods. Necessary child care arrangements should be made in the event that buildings are required to close.
  • Similar to school districts and universities across the state and the nation, we are exploring “continued learning” options in the event of a prolonged school closure.
Prevention, Cleaning and Disinfection
  • Students and staff are being encouraged to stay home when they feel sick.
  • Educational materials about proper handwashing and staying healthy are being distributed to buildings.
  • Bus drivers are disinfecting their buses in between trips.
  • Teachers will be advised to clear classroom surfaces at night so they can be sanitized.
  • All classrooms and high contact areas are disinfected daily
  • Special cleaning equipment is being utilized for facilities having large gatherings of people.
Travel and Trips  
Please know that we are committed to keeping our students safe and healthy and providing the most up-to-date information about this public health issue. Be sure to check our website (www.nscsd.org/updates) dedicated to updating the community about this important health issue.
 
Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools
March 11, 2020  
School Superintendents and Nurses Attend Training With Onondaga County Health Department Commissioner Dr. Indu
Gupta












 

March 5, 2020
North Syracuse Central School District launches Urgent News Update Center


You may know that New York State has confirmed the novel coronavirus 19 (COVID-19) in the state. While the virus has not been found locally, there are concerns about what will happen if the virus is found in the District.

We are currently working with other local school districts and the Onondaga County Health Department to obtain information and provide guidance to staff and families. In an effort to share information as quickly as possible, we have developed this website for this purpose.
 
The District is following the cleaning and disinfection recommendations recently put out by the New York State Health Department, focusing on specific high-risk locations. Information from the Health Department has been shared with all Facilities Department staff.
 
As a reminder, we are still in the midst of our regular cold and flu season, and it is important that we continue to follow recommendations to minimize the spread of all respiratory viruses, including COVID-19. Please share the following important reminders from the NYS Department of Health with your children and family members:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol- based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing. If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
  • Routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Please be assured that the North Syracuse Central School District is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for all students, staff and families. We will continue to follow recommendations provided by the experts at the Centers for Disease Control, World Health Organization, New York State Department of Health and Onondaga County Health Department. These organizations are closely monitoring the situation and providing guidance as necessary.
 
For the most up to date information about COVID-19, be sure to check our website (www.nscsd.org/updates) dedicated to updating the community about this important health issue.
 
Sincerely,
Daniel D. Bowles, Superintendent of Schools

What do we know? 
Since this virus is very new, health authorities continue to carefully watch how this virus spreads. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working hard to learn as much as possible about this new virus, so that we can better understand how it spreads and causes illness.  The CDC considers this virus to be a serious public health concern.  Based on current information the CDC recommends avoiding travel to China. Updated travel information related to 2019-nCoV can be found at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/novel-coronavirus-china
 
 

Additional Resources

  What is COVID-19 
  Prevention
  Info for school nurses
 
 

 

March 4, 2020
Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon, along with Commissioner of Health Indu Gupta and Commissioner of Emergency Management Dan Wears, held a press conference about COVID-19. Click here to view the press conference video online. 
 

February 14, 2020
Cleaning for Health - How the District is Fighting the Flu and Coronavirus

As North Syracuse Central School District students and teachers head into mid-winter recess for some down-time, District custodial staff will be working during the break to clean and sanitize classrooms, bathrooms and common areas so that when students and teachers return, they are in the healthiest environment possible.

Earlier this year, Phil Smith, North Syracuse Central School District’s Custodial Director, spent time showing News Channel 9 some advanced cleaning equipment now in use in the District. New machines allow District staff to provide deep cleaning in specific areas impacted by student and staff illness. The Total 360 machine, which uses an electrically charged disinfectant to rapidly kill viruses and germs, has been in use throughout the flu season. 

“As the number of flu cases in Central New York increase, and with global concerns about the Coronavirus, we are thankful to have this new tool to reduce the risk of illness being contracted in our school buildings,” Smith said recently. “Custodians are the first line of defense keeping our schools healthy places and the way we clean largely determines the level of health for students and staff."

Research has shown that custodial staff are a vital link between clean school buildings, healthy students, and productive staff. In the North Syracuse Central School District, Matthew Erwin, the Director of Facilities, is quick to point out the correlation between the work his crew does and student success. “A healthy school environment can result in lower absentee rates among students and staff,” he said. “Not only are custodians are an integral part of a healthy school, but the work they do also improves the academic success of students.”

The New York State Department of Health, in cooperation with the New York State Education Department, has provided guidance to school districts in the form of a letter with information about the new 2019 Novel (new) Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and protecting our families. 

The following pieces of information were also provided in a sample letter to parent.

What do we know? 
Since this virus is very new, health authorities continue to carefully watch how this virus spreads. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working hard to learn as much as possible about this new virus, so that we can better understand how it spreads and causes illness.  The CDC considers this virus to be a serious public health concern.  Based on current information the CDC recommends avoiding travel to China. Updated travel information related to 2019-nCoV can be found at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/novel-coronavirus-china

How Does 2019 Novel (New) Coronavirus Spread?  
Health experts believe the virus probably spreads from animals to humans and from person to person. It’s not clear yet how easily the virus spreads from person-to-person. The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCov) is not currently a concern for the general public and is not actively circulating among New Yorkers at this time. Therefore, there is no need to cancel school or social events, and there is no need for students or school staff to wear surgical masks at school.   

Prevention 
There are currently no vaccines available to protect against this virus. The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recommends the following ways to minimize the spread of all respiratory viruses, including 2019-nCoV: 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.  If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
  • Routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • CDC recommends that travelers avoid all travel to China.

Symptoms 
Information to date suggests that 2019-nCoV causes mild-to-moderate illness and symptoms like the flu, including fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.   

Are visitors from China being screened? 
Yes, as of February 2nd new screening protocols are conducted for individuals entering the US from China at designated airports.  

PreK-12 schools may have students who attend school and have traveled to various areas in Asia, including China. Students should not be excluded from school or any school activities based on race, country of origin, or recent travel (or a family member’s recent travel), including to any part of China.  Schools may only exclude a student if a  local health department informs the school that a student must comply with a quarantine order or the  student is symptomatic of a communicable or infectious disease pursuant to Education Law §906.  

Important Health Information for Those Who Have Recently Traveled to Wuhan, Hubei Province, China and Experience Symptoms 
If you recently traveled to Wuhan, China and feel sick with fever, cough or trouble breathing; OR you develop symptoms within 14 days of traveling there, you should: 

  • Seek medical care right away. Call ahead and tell them about your travel and symptoms.
  • Avoid contact with others.
  • Stay home, except for seeking medical care.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Wash hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60%alcohol.
  • Contact your local health department.

This is an emerging, rapidly changing situation. For questions please contact your local department of health or the NYS DOH Novel Coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065.

We encourage you to keep up to date about 2019-nCoV, its treatment and prevention by visiting the following websites: 

 

February 5, 2020
A new coronavirus, called 2019 Novel (new) Coronavirus, was found in Wuhan, Hubei Province China. This virus has not been found in humans before. This coronavirus can lead to fever, cough and trouble breathing or shortness of breath.

The New York State Department of Health, in cooperation with the New York State Education Department, has provided guidance to school districts in the form of a letter with information about the new 2019 Novel (new) Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) and protecting our families.