BKW School Reopening Plan posted ahead of deadline

The Berne-Knox-Westerlo Central School District posted its School Reopening Plan for 2020-21 on July 28 to its district website as required by the New York State Education Department (SED), ahead of the July 31 deadline.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tim Mundell thanked the district’s School Reopening Task Force for their work on the draft plan, which was presented July 27 to the Board of Education and which will be reviewed by the state in August.

The plan is posted on this website at https://www.bkwschools.org/bkw-csd-school-reopening-plan-for-2020-21/ and is linked to the website’s homepage banner and to reopening/coronavirus resources webpage.

“We want to thank our Reopening Task Force and our internal subcommittees for their efforts in this process,” said Dr. Mundell. “Stakeholders representing every segment of our school organization, parents, and community have met regularly since June 1 to review evolving guidance, analyze a variety of possible needs and procedures in our district, and review other statewide plans to inform their understanding of how our plan would be structured.

“When the final guidance came out from the state Department of Health on July 13, and from SED on July 16, our team took the lead and worked to process more than 200 pages of information to integrate it with our local reopening plan. The team has turned that volume of information around in order to provide it to the community within 12 days.

“I commend the work of the Task Force and the subcommittees,” Dr. Mundell said. “We appreciate the patience of the community as we have worked through all of the various guidance documents, while also turning the information into an actionable plan that aligns with every bit of guidance for safety in our schools during this time.”

The district will continue its efforts to support and communicate with students and their families about the reopening plan and other school-related news via its website, district email messaging system, letters from principals and other staff, and individual calls and other outreach as needed.

BKW’s School Reopening Plan will be updated regularly as new guidance and regulations are issued by the state during the coming weeks. District residents are encouraged to visit the School Reopening Plan webpage to keep apprised of any updates. Questions about the plan may be directed to Dr. Mundell.

Following the release of school reopening guidelines by Governor Cuomo, DOH and SED in mid-July, school districts statewide were required to submit a school reopening plan to SED by July 31. Gov. Cuomo said New York state will review school district plans during the week of August 1-7. The state then will approve, deny, or suggest changes to those plans. Based on the plans and the most recent health data, a decision to reopen schools to students statewide in the fall will also be made by the state at that time, the governor said.