Coronavirus Information & Updates

Coronavirus Information & Updates

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Superintendent's Letters

July 31, 2020

East Rochester Union Free families, 

 

I am pleased to inform you that the 2020 Reopening Plan for the East Rochester Union Free School District has been completed and submitted to the State. I am proud of the East Rochester team, who spent hours collaborating to develop what has become our final plan. The amount of work achieved in the timespan we were given is incredible. 

 

Some highlights from the ERUFSD plan include:

 

Cohorts: Students will be placed in instructional cohorts of up to 12 students. This will allow for social distancing (with desks spaced 6 feet apart) and contact tracing (groups will remain together in one classroom to cut down on social interaction). Teachers will rotate between classes to cut down on the amount of foot traffic in hallways.

 

Schedules: PreK-5 students will be in the building from 8:10 a.m. until 2:10 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Wednesdays will be a remote learning day. Additionally, students will engage in one fully virtual class. 

  • MLA students will be in the building from 9 a.m. until 2:10 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Wednesdays will be a remote learning day. Additionally, students will engage in one fully virtual class. This equates to a combined 5 hours and 10 minutes of instruction each day.
  • High School students will attend in-person instruction two days a week from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and remote instruction three days a week. Half of the High School will fall into Group A and will attend in-person instruction on Mondays and Thursdays. Group B will attend in-person on Tuesdays and Fridays. Wednesdays will be a remote learning day for all high school students.
  • High School families should expect notification from the school by the end of the day on August 17 as to which in-person schedule they will follow (Group A or Group B).

More information on schedules can be found in the “Schedules” section of our reopening plan.

 

Screening: Families will be required to perform health screenings each day before students are admitted to campus. The district is working with a handful of software developers to determine the best option for families to submit their screening results each morning. More information will be sent as the district finalizes these plans.

 

Cleaning: The district is performing regular deep cleaning of the school building, as well as frequent sanitation of high-touch areas. Classrooms will also be supplied with wipes for cleaning throughout the day. Hand sanitizing stations will be placed throughout the building, including inside each classroom.

 

Masks: In accordance with the guidance issued by the Department of Health (DOH) and New York State Education Department (NYSED) for In-Person Instruction During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, the Board of Education is currently drafting a policy to be adopted before the beginning of the school year, addressing the use of masks. Students, staff and visitors will be required to wear a mask or face covering while on district transportation or on campus, whenever social distancing is not possible. Repercussions for violating mask protocols will be in line with the East Rochester Union Free School District Code of Conduct

 

In order to fully prepare our staff for the changes this year, the district has made the decision to use four professional development days ahead of the first day of instruction. The first day for students has been moved to Thursday, September 10. This adjustment is in line with date changes being made by other schools throughout the county.

 

To view the East Rochester Union Free School District Reopening Plan in its entirety, please visit the “Reopening Plan 2020” section on our website. Additionally, attached to this email you will find a “Reopening Plan 2020” FAQ page.

 

EAST ROCHESTER UFSD COVID-19 FAQ.pdf 

 

Thank you so much for your cooperation throughout this tedious process. We value the opinions of our families and our staff, and were able to use your feedback as we developed this plan. I’d like to stress, once again, that our reopening plan may change as the State makes decisions for districts throughout New York. 

 

Our top priority is and will always be the health and safety of our students and staff here at East Rochester. 

 

Thank you, 

Richard G. Stutzman
Interim Superintendent
East Rochester Union Free School District


July 24, 2020

East Rochester Union Free School District families, 


Our team at East Rochester has been reviewing guidance from the New York State Education Department and the Department of Health as we continue to develop our reopening plan for the upcoming school year. Throughout this process we have worked, and will continue to work, with school districts in our area to determine how we will educate students while keeping both our children and staff healthy and safe. We have also been working with ER faculty, staff and parents throughout the process. 


At this point, we are contemplating three possible reopening scenarios: in-person instruction, remote instruction, and a combination of the two. While reviewing the guidance, our team has decided the best course of action will be a hybrid model of learning, including in-person and virtual instruction.


Our planning will remain fluid and student-centered with equity and flexibility at its core in order to be prepared to shift between in-person, remote learning, and a hybrid model in a way that is least disruptive to students. 


As we continue to develop our plan we are involving various school and community stakeholders for input and feedback. Please understand there are still many logistics to consider as we continue to develop our plan to submit to the state by Friday, July 31. The district will continue to send letters to families as details within our reopening plan develop and there are updates to share.


I remind everyone, no final decision has been made if school buildings will reopen in September. The Governor stated schools can reopen if the region is in Phase IV and if its daily infection rate remains below 5 percent or lower using a 14-day average. Schools will close if the regional infection rate rises above 9 percent, using a 7-day average. NYS will make the formula determination August 1-7.  It is also important to note, given the trending health data, as we move forward it is possible that we will be required by the Governor to move to a totally remote instructional model.


Unfortunately, the pandemic will prevent us from realizing all of our expectations for a typical school opening. The safety of our students, staff, families and community is our

top priority. Collectively, we will do our best to create plans that are as close to a typical school opening with safety as the top priority.


Thank you, 


Richard G. Stutzman

Interim Superintendent 

East Rochester Union Free School District


July 17, 2020

East Rochester Union Free School District families, 


This week, the New York State Education Department and the New York State Department of Health released guidance for reopening schools.


Our team at East Rochester has reviewed the guidance and is continuing to develop our reopening plan to submit by the end of the month. Administration met throughout the last two weeks to work through the guidance and determine what the options for reopening could look like. At this point, there are three options being considered:


  1. All students return to in-person instruction in September

  2. Some grades return to in-person instruction while other grades follow a hybrid (in-person and remote) model of instruction

  3. All students move to remote learning


The administrative team is working with grade level and department leaders to discuss how each option would be implemented and finalize the district’s plan to submit to the State by July 31.


We will provide another update next Friday. As always, our priority continues to be the health and safety of our students and staff, and supporting our students and families during this time of crisis.


Thank you for your continued patience as we work through this together. 


Richard G. Stutzman, Jr.

Interim Superintendent 

East Rochester Union Free School District


July 10, 2020
 

East Rochester Union Free School District families,

As the school year draws nearer, the administrative team at East Rochester has been working to develop a plan for re-opening. This team met Thursday and Friday this week (July 9/10) and plan to meet Monday and Tuesday (July 13/14) of next week.

The team at East Rochester is reviewing guidelines and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics. We are awaiting recommendations from the New York Department of Education to be released on Monday, July 13. These recommendations are being considered as we develop our plan to submit to the state by the end of July.

Thank you to families who have completed the parent input survey sent out this week. To those who have not yet had the chance, you can also find the survey here. We appreciate your feedback as we assess options for the fall. Please know that our priority will continue to be the health and safety of our students and staff, and supporting our students and families during this time of crisis.

The district plans to send letters to families as our reopening plans develop and there are updates to share. Ideally, these letters will be sent on Fridays.

Thank you,

Richard Stutzman
Interim Superintendent
East Rochester Union Free School District

June 18, 2020

Dear ER Community,

I would like to start this update by taking this opportunity to thank the ER community for your overwhelming support of our 2020-2021 budget. I know that I sound like a broken record but your commitment to our school is unprecedented.  This was a very difficult and stressful budget process and the sacrifice that was made by our entire staff and your willingness to support this plan by approving this budget made this budget a total community effort.  On behalf of our students thank you.  

In case you have not heard, four of our teachers are retiring at the end of June.  Michael Mulcahy, Miriam Parrone, Anne Ross, and Julie Warner have decided to retire.  Each one of these great professionals has always gone above and beyond for our students.  I for one know that they will be truly missed.  I ask that you join me in wishing each of them a very relaxing, healthy and blessed retirement.  

Fun in the Sun (FITS) and the Community Pool - As I shared last week we have been working on determining the viability of operating these two programs. 

  • We have made a decision on FITS and it has been determined given all of the guidelines and requirements that we need to implement  that it is not in our best interest to operate this program this summer.  What I need to point out is that this program stands alone and is not supported by your tax dollars.  When determining the actual cost to run the program this summer, the inability to have the  participants go on field trips and not knowing if the pool will open coupled with what we would need to charge to breakeven we determined that this is not a feasible program to operate during the summer of 2020.  Rest assured the plan is to operate FITS in the summer of 2021.
  • As far as the pool is concerned, we have yet to receive a permit from the Monroe County Health Department to open it.  In addition, we are in the process to determine, based upon  the Department of Health guidelines, what is needed to be able to open the pool and to be in compliance with these very stringent expectations.  Based upon what we know, the cost to open the pool will be much greater than past years given the staffing requirements that we will have to hire.  We are trying to determine what the actual costs may actually be and then determine what the cost to the user will be.  Until we can finalize this we are not in a position to make a recommendation to the Board.  We have some time to do this right given that it will be a couple of weeks at least before we can get a go ahead from the Monroe County Health  Department.  Once we make a decision we will communicate it to you.

Meals Program - it is important to note that our Meals Program will run through June 30, 2020.  The program will resume on Monday July 6, 2020 and run through August 14, 2020.  The hours of operation will continue to be from 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM.  Each day two meals will be packaged and distributed.  As an important reminder, meals are free for children 18 and under and there is a $4.00 charge for adults.

UPK and Kindergarten Registration - If you have not done so already the District continues to register students for UPK and Kindergarten for the 2020-21 school year. If you have a child who is not registered yet for these programs for the 2020-21 school year, please contact our district registrar at er.registar@erschools.org. You can also visit our website here:

 

http://www.erschools.org/departments/registration/pre-k_and_k_registration

 

To register your child for UPK, the child must be four years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020. Kindergarten is for those who will be five years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020.

 

Class of 2020 Parade - Tonight (June 18th) our seniors will gather at Techniplex and parade up to the school entering our property at the Ambulance Building and proceeding up to the school to pick up their caps and gowns.  I am sure that our staff will be lining the sidewalk (practicing social distancing of course) to say their goodbyes to this great class.  If you sign on to our Website the parade route is outlined for you.  My one request is that you do your best to comply with the social distancing rules. It is my sincere hope that this will be a very great event for a class who has experienced a very unusual Senior year.

 

Graduation 2020 - will take place at 10:00 on Saturday, July 18th with the rain date on Sunday, July 19th.  Given the guidelines and the requirements that have been handed down to us the number of people being able to attend will be limited to the immediate family.  In the next couple of weeks we will be providing our seniors and their families with the details of how this will work.  It will be set up as if you were going to the drive in movies.  

 

In closing, this will be my last update unless there is something that you need to know immediately (the pool).  We are starting next week to develop a plan to reopen school in the fall with your children in their seats unless the Governor throws a monkey wrench into what we are planning to do.  It won’t be until late July at least given that once we develop our plan it has to be approved by the NYS Education Department,  the NYS Department of Health and the Governor’s office. It has been a true pleasure to work with you not only for the past 14 weeks but the entire school year.  I openly share with anyone who will listen what a great community East Rochester is and that the school is the hub of the community.  The reason for this is the commitment of our community and staff.  It has been an honor and a blessing to have been a part of this community this past year as well as the two years I was with you during my first tour of duty.  Please have a safe and healthy summer.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to email me at richard.stutzman@erschools.org,  Thank you again for all of your patience and support.

 

So please take care and have a safe, fun filled and healthy summer.  May God Bless you and your families. Together, We are ER!!!! 

Richard G. Stutzman, Jr.

Interim Superintendent


June 12, 2020

Dear ER Community,

It is my sincere hope that you and your families had a good week. With things starting to open up I know for myself I find that I have more energy and I am happy to at least get back to somewhat normal.  As you are well aware this is the last week of “new learning.”  Our teachers will work with your child to make sure that everything is complete and we will sign off for the summer on June 18th.  For me this is a bittersweet moment knowing for one that hopefully we can return to school in the fall but another school year is coming to an end.  

There are a couple of things I would like to share with you.

School Budget Vote and School Board Election: As we shared with you at the beginning of the week, our Governor issued another Executive Order extending the time residents can submit their budget/school board vote until June 16th at 5:00.  The only ballots we can accept as per the Executive Order are by US Mail and we are not allowed to issue additional ballots to those who request them. If you plan on voting, I would make sure you place your ballot in the mail by Saturday.  I am not sure if you mail it on Monday we will receive it in time.

 

Instructions on filling out ballots & envelopes:

  • Please mark the ballot with either an (X) or a (✔), any other notation or stray mark will not be accepted. 
  • Please fold your ballot so that your vote does not show.
  • Place the ballot in the oath envelope.  Please note that there should be (1) ballot per oath envelope. 
  • Seal the oath envelope and complete the information on the front and back of the oath envelope. 
  • Be sure to sign the Statement of Absentee Voter on the back of the oath envelope. If you do not sign the oath envelope, your vote will not be val
  • Place the completed oath envelope(s) in the larger envelope addressed to Kristen Adler District Clerk, and place your ballot in the mail in the prepaid postage envelope.

 

The following is the link to our printed budget information:  

http://www.erschools.org/cms/One.aspx?portalId=240396&pageId=25834503  

 

The following is a link to my budget message to the entire community:

http://www.erschools.org/district/budget/2020-2021_budget/2020-2021_budget_video 

 

If after reviewing these materials if you have questions please do not hesitate to reach out to me

richard.stutzman@erschools.org or our Business Administrator Staci Sansoucie at

staci.sansoucie@erschools.org

 

Meals Program - it is important to note that our Meals Program will run through June 30, 2020.  The program will resume on Monday July 6, 2020 and run through August 14, 2020.  The hours of operation will continue to be from 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM.  Each day two meals will be packaged and distributed.  As an important reminder, meals are free for children 18 and under and there is a $4.00 charge for adults.

UPK and Kindergarten Registration - If you have not done so already the District continues to register students for UPK and Kindergarten for the 2020-21 school year. If you have a child who is not registered yet for these programs for the 2020-21 school year, please contact our district registrar at er.registar@erschools.org. You can also visit our website here:

 

http://www.erschools.org/departments/registration/pre-k_and_k_registration

 

To register your child for UPK, the child must be four years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020. Kindergarten is for those who will be five years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020.

 

Class of 2020 Parade - On Thursday, June 18th our seniors will gather at Techniplex and parade up to the school entering our property at the Ambulance Building and proceeding up to the school to pick up their caps and gowns.  I am sure that our staff will be lining the sidewalk (practicing social distancing of course) to say their goodbyes to this great class.  If you sign on to our Website the parade route is outlined for you.  My one request is that you do your best to comply with the social distancing rules. It is my sincere hope that this will be a very great event for a class who has experienced a very unusual Senior year.

 

Graduation 2020 - I want to share that we have selected Saturday, July 18th for our graduation ceremony.  The rain date is Sunday, July 19th.  Our plan is to start at 10:00 in the morning.  It will be outside and most likely unless we receive word we can have a crowd far greater than 150 people it will be limited to the immediate families of our seniors and will be arranged like you are going to the drive-in.  Trust me, this is not what we really want to do but as of today, June 12th we are limited as to how we can honor the Class of 2020. I need to share that even up to 4 weeks ago we were planning a virtual graduation ceremony as one of our options. Once we can get to Phase 4 which as of now is scheduled for June 26th we will be able to finalize and communicate the logistics of the ceremony.   

 

Fun in the Sun (FITS) - We have spent the past two weeks determining if we can offer this program given all of the guidelines that have been placed upon us by the NYS Department of Health.  Two things are certain, as of now we cannot go on day trips to many points of interest and fun and the Kate Gleason pool is closed and there is no clear direction if we will be allowed to open it.  Hopefully by Tuesday evening we will share our plan with the School Board and share that with you on Wednesday, Thursday at the latest.

 

In closing, have a great weekend. I realize that the past 13 weeks have been a grind but each of you have risen to the challenge and have done your part to support your children. Thank you again for all of your patience and support.

So please take care and stay healthy. May God Bless you and your families. Together, We are ER!!!! 

Richard G. Stutzman, Jr.

Interim Superintendent

June 5, 2020

Dear ER Community,

Week 12 of the closure is now in the books.  The good news is that we have two weeks left and our staff, students, and parents can take a step back and try to relax.  The past 12 weeks have gone by quickly but I fully realize that the stress trying to balance everything that comes about on a daily basis without being able to step away given the shutdown of our state has been extremely problematic. Although it is going slow, it appears that things are starting to return to whatever the new normal will be which will undoubtedly help.  With the above said, I would like to take this opportunity to share with you a couple of items that I hope you will feel are informative.

School Budget Vote and School Board Election: Our annual School Budget Vote and Board of Education Election is next Tuesday, June 9, 2020. If you haven't yet sent in your absentee ballot, please be sure to return it to our district clerk by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, June 9. By law, any ballots received after 5 p.m. cannot be accepted, regardless of the postmark date. If you have not sent your ballot via US Mail by Saturday, June 6, I highly encourage you to place your ballot in the secured box outside the District Office. Ballots for additional household members who are qualified voters can be requested by contacting our District Clerk, Kristen Adler, at 248-6302 or you can email her at kristen.adler@erschools.org

 

Instructions on filling out ballots & envelopes:

  • Please mark the ballot with either an (X) or a (✔), any other notation or stray mark will not be accepted. 
  • Please fold your ballot so that your vote does not show.
  • Place the ballot in the oath envelope.  Please note that there should be (1) ballot per oath envelope. 
  • Seal the oath envelope and complete the information on the front and back of the oath envelope. 
    Be sure to sign the Statement of Absentee Voter on the back of the oath envelope. If you do not sign the oath envelope, your vote will not be valid.
  • Place the completed oath envelope(s) in the larger envelope addressed to Kristen Adler District Clerk, and mail or hand deliver as mentioned above.

 

The following is the link to our printed budget information:  

http://www.erschools.org/cms/One.aspx?portalId=240396&pageId=25834503  

 

The following is a link to my budget message to the entire community:

http://www.erschools.org/district/budget/2020-2021_budget/2020-2021_budget_video 

 

If after reviewing these materials if you have questions please do not hesitate to reach out to me

richard.stutzman@erschools.org or our Business Administrator Staci Sansoucie at

staci.sansoucie@erschools.org

 

Meals Program - it is important to note that our Meals Program will run through June 30, 2020.  The program will resume on Monday July 6, 2020 and run through August 14, 2020.  The hours of operation will continue to be from 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM.  Each day two meals will be packaged and distributed.  As an important reminder, meals are free for children and there is a $4.00 charge for adults.

Pickup Plan for Student Personal Belongings: I am happy to report that the 1-5 Pickup of student belongings went very well.  I want to thank everyone for their cooperation.  If you were unable to pick up your child’s belongings please contact the elementary office and we will collaboratively find a way to get them to you.  

The schedule for the week of June 8th is as follows:

UPK and Kindergarten - Monday, June 8, 2020

  • PK Families may pick-up or drive-up to the Elementary Main Entrance between 2 and 3 P.M.
  • K Families may pick-up or drive-up to the PK Entrance between 2 and 3 P.M.

GRADES 6-12

Schedule: 

Last Name A-K

June 9th from 1:00-3:00 PM

Last Name L-Z

June 10th from 1:00-3:00 PM

Process:

  • Student items will be removed from lockers ahead of time and placed in a staging area for efficient distribution by staff.
  • To limit the number of people on campus, we are asking that students come alone or only with one parent. 
  • If coming onto campus by car, please stay in your car and a staff member will come to you.  
  • For those walking onto campus, a waiting area will be indicated.
  • To maintain social distancing protocols, masks must be worn and non-family members must maintain at least 6 feet between people. 

Note: students in Grades 6-11 will keep their chromebooks for the summer. Seniors will be returning their chromebooks at a later date.

UPK and Kindergarten Registration - If you have not done so already the District continues to register students for UPK and Kindergarten for the 2020-21 school year. If you have a child who is not registered yet for these programs for the 2020-21 school year, please contact our district registrar at er.registar@erschools.org. You can also visit our website here:


http://www.erschools.org/departments/registration/pre-k_and_k_registration


To register your child for UPK, the child must be four years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020. Kindergarten is for those who will be five years old on or before Dec. 1, 2020.


In closing, have a great weekend. The next two weeks (9 days) our teachers will focus on assisting your child to complete their assignments for the 2019-20 school year.  We are still awaiting guidance from our Governor pertaining to what we can do to honor our graduating seniors.  We do have a plan but until the Governor provides us with his parameters for what we can and cannot do we are reluctant to share what our plans are.  The not knowing what the expectations and guidelines are is the most troublesome and frustrating part of my job.  However, working in a community and with a staff that truly values and cherishes our children far outweighs the bureaucracy that has held us back in trying to do what we need to do to support our children.  That is why I frequently share with you why I am so blessed to be a part of you.  Thank you again for all of your patience and support.

So please take care and stay healthy. May God Bless you and your families.  We are ER!!!! 

Richard G. Stutzman, Jr.

Interim Superintendent

 

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