Superintendent Memo (Jan. 2): Returning From Holiday Recess & COVID Updates
January 2, 2022
The following message from Lansingburgh Superintendent, Dr. Abitabile, was emailed to all Lansingburgh families on Sunday, January 2.
All school reopening news and COVID-19 updates can be found on the district’s 2021-2022 Reopening Updates page here.
Lansingburgh School Community,
We hope you are enjoying a restful holiday break with your family. As we look ahead to the New Year, the health and safety of our students and staff remain our highest priority. Our schools will be open, as scheduled, on Monday, January 3rd for all students. However, we are putting additional health and safety measures in place to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and keep our schools open for learning.
Last week, Governor Hochul held a webinar with superintendents, pledging millions of test kits to provide to school districts across the state. While the Governor’s goal was for families to administer these tests at home prior to their children arriving from break on Monday, there were too many obstacles with this given the timing of the holiday break that did not allow this to happen. In a memo to school districts yesterday, State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett indicated that districts could use the kits to implement Test to Stay, test on the first day back (for those who previously consented to testing), or as part of ongoing surveillance testing.
COVID Testing After Returning from Holiday Break
-We anticipate receiving at-home test kits by Tuesday, January 4th and are planning for distribution later in the week for any family who would like to keep a test kit at home.
-Anyone who tests positive on a take-home test should immediately report their results to the school and begin isolating. Students testing positive using an at-home test kit must complete a lab-confirmed COVID test. Please visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.
-Students who test positive must be isolated for 10 days and can return to school on day 11 if there is symptom resolution.
-At this time, individuals cannot test out of quarantine or isolation.
-Taking part in testing is voluntary. We strongly encourage that you utilize these home test kits for your children when they are available. If you or others in your household need to be tested, please visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.
Test to Stay Update
Last week, the state updated guidance on Test to Stay to reduce the number of students and staff who would be excluded from school following a COVID-19 exposure. At this time, our local health departments are reviewing and assessing the equity and feasibility of this Test to Stay strategy throughout our counties.
Local school districts and the BOCES will continue to monitor local conditions in partnership with our local health departments.
The New York State Department of Health has not yet adopted the CDC updates on shortening quarantine and isolation for the general population. The state has only adopted this reduction for essential workers (which does not include those working in an educational setting). As a result, the quarantine period remains at 10 days. If there are any changes, we will communicate them as soon as possible.
We are seeing the impact of the omicron variant throughout the region and state. We ask for your continued cooperation in following our established COVID protocols, including mask-wearing, physical distancing, and staying home when sick. We will continue to keep you updated with any changes to conditions or protocols.
Thank you for your continued partnership and patience.
Dr. Antonio W. Abitabile, Ed. D.