COVID: 3 Safety requirements for students, teachers, and staff

Our Building Safety Procedures, presented by our SGO

Face Coverings are Required

What Is a Face Covering?

A face covering is any well-secured cloth covering or disposable mask.  It must cover a person’s nose and mouth.  It is worn to reduce the risk of transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19.

  • Acceptable face coverings include but are not limited to cloth-based face coverings and disposable surgical masks that cover both the mouth and nose. 

What Types of Face Coverings Are Not Permitted?

  • Bandanas and neck gaiters are not permitted.
  • Face coverings with an exhalation valve or vent are not permitted.  Exhalation valves allow unfiltered exhaled air to escape to others.
  • Face coverings that completely cover or hide an individual’s face are not permitted.
  • Clear face shields cannot be worn unless accompanied by a face covering.

Random Sample Testing for COVID-19

Dear Families, 

We are so excited to welcome you back into our school building! As we begin this new school year, the health  and safety of all students and staff remains our top concern. That’s why many things in our school buildings will  look different this year, from face masks to physical distancing in every classroom to disinfecting every school,  every night. We are taking all of these steps to ensure that our schools remain safe, our students and staff stay  healthy, and that you feel confident sending your children for in-person learning. 

We are asking for your help with another important element of our health and safety work: testing  our students and staff for COVID-19. Keeping school buildings open depends on helping us stay aware of and take immediate action to address COVID-19 concerns in our buildings. The DOE has partnered with NYC Health + Hospitals, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the NYC Test & Trace  Corps to arrange for testing of NYC DOE students and staff for COVID-19 infection. 

Our testing partners will test a randomly selected group of staff and students in schools once per month. The  number of children and staff to be tested each month will depend on the size of the school population.  The test is easy, quick, and safe. They do not use the “long swab” that goes in the back of the nose. A short, small swab (like a Q-Tip) that goes just in the front of the nose is used. Later this school year, it is possible that  tests will be administered by collecting a small amount of saliva (spit). 

We need your consent in order for us to administer a COVID-19 test to your child. Please sign and return the consent form as soon as possible. 

Monthly testing of randomly selected staff and students is a vital part of our efforts to prevent COVID-19 transmission in our buildings.  This helps identify positive COVID-19 cases when symptoms are not present.  The success of this  testing initiative relies on the partnership and cooperation of staff and students.  

While consent to testing is not mandatory, providing our testing partners with a sufficient monthly sample size to  identify the prevalence of COVID-19 is critical in our ongoing fight against this virus.  This helps ensure we can keep  school communities in school buildings for in-person learning. Students  who do not have consent forms on file may be required to learn remotely if we do not receive forms from enough  students in the school. 

Testing in schools will begin in October. You can reach out to your school at any time with any questions or  concerns.  

Please read the Update for Families on COVID-19 Testing (September 29, 2020).