Everyone here at BKW is looking forward to welcoming all of our students back for in-person instruction in just a few short days. Our goal this year is to keep students in school for as many days as possible, while also maintaining a safe environment for both students and staff. To do this, as we have previously communicated, we will follow a layered mitigation protocol (link below) in an effort to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in our school buildings.
On Friday afternoon (August 27) the NYS Department of Health issued a statement requiring that all students, staff, and visitors in schools wear a mask. This is in line with the announcement made this week by Governor Kathy Hochul, who directed the New York State Department of Health to institute a statewide mask requirement for schools. Mask wearing is one of several mitigation protocols included in our plan for the year, and we know it is a key part of a system to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
It is our expectation that all students, staff, and any visitors will wear a mask in school when we open in September. A mask will be provided for anyone who may not have one to wear. Teachers and school staff will continue to offer periodic mask breaks. Masks may be removed for eating, drinking, singing, or playing wind instruments when 6 feet of distancing is maintained.
By working together we can reduce the infection rate and beat back this Delta variant. The data in the region is currently showing that trend. We encourage everyone- parents, students, staff and community- to unify in this effort, while we are also staying focused on our primary purpose of caring for, and teaching, children.
There are many new and exciting opportunities in store for students this year. Our staff has been working diligently to prepare for the first day of school and are excited to engage students in project-based learning, STEAM activities, and outdoor experiences. Let’s all do our part to ensure they get to participate in these activities.
Thank you for your continued partnership in what we hope will be a great start to the new school year.
Dr. Timothy Mundell
Superintendent of Schools