May 21 Update

Posted by Daren Lolkema on 5/21/2020 2:00:00 PM

May 21, 2020 Update

Good Evening WCSD Community:

This communication is to keep you updated on important matters regarding COVID-19 and the impact on our WCSD learning community.

Updates From the NYS Governor’s Office

New York State has released a “Regional Monitoring Dashboard” which includes the current status for our Region against the CDC recommended metrics required to reopen businesses in our area.  This is a very informative dashboard, one that helps us understand what is still required for us to achieve as a community before we can move our Region from Phase 1 to Phase 2 of the States “Re-Opening Plan”.   

Our goal is to ensure that all students are doing the required class assignments for a very positive outcome.  These unique circumstances call for unique teaching and learning (Continuity of Learning), student engagement, and grading processes. The Board of Education, the entire administration, teachers and support staff are cheering for our WCSD families while ensuring that students are doing what is expected of them.  We will continue to monitor the Governor’s COVID-19 website for further updates.

Summer School

We are still waiting for further guidance on summer school, to which the Governor indicated such guidance will not be available until the end of May. All WCSD summer school programs include Extended School Year (ESY), Secondary High School, as well as, Federally Funded program (ENL and/or Title I).  Once we receive the guidance from the Governor, WCSD will inform you and begin to execute a plan for our students.

Wappingers CSD Budget Update

Please tune into the Board of Education meeting tonight where the final presentation to the Superintendent’s Proposed Budget will be presented. 

Wappingers CSD School Calendar

We have updated our 2019-2020 school calendar to reflect Friday May 22nd as an instructional day, staff and students will be continuing our Continuity of Learning.  

We will be closed on Monday May 25th in observance of the Memorial Day Holiday.  To view our calendar online please use this link.  

We know that there are several school districts in our area that are discussing the concept of ‘ending the school year early’ or have sent notification about a new date to end school.  We have combed over guidance documents from the State of New York, and consulted with our legal team.  While the guidance documents can seem somewhat confusing we are still legally responsible to follow the calendar.  Once again, please feel free to view it by using the link above.

Only, if the Governor provides an executive order that can impact the rest of the school year’s calendar for WCSD, we will be sure to update it and share that information with you immediately. Once again, WCSD will continue to follow the calendar as is on our website.

Tutoring Available for K-12 Students

Dutchess-Orange Tutoring (DOT) is a network of local undergrads and high school students in the Orange/Dutchess NY area providing free virtual academic assistance to K-12 students in public districts in these counties while school is closed. DOT particularly seeks to help students with parents who do not have the time to supplement their children’s new form of online learning, do not speak English as a first language, or do not otherwise have the ability to help their kids with their coursework. DOT also seeks to help students who typically rely on getting extra help from teachers outside of normal classroom help. Students and parents can sign up for this service here: https://dotutoring.wixsite.com/dotutoring

Wappingers CSD Senior Graduation

We have received new information this week from our Dutchess County Executive with regards to Graduation Planning for our June Grads.  We are waiting for his office’s official guidance document to be released which will help us further plan a memorable event for our students.  But early indications from the information we received suggest we will be even more constrained in terms of what we are allowed to do than we previously thought.  Dutchess County Executive Molinaro would like our community to know that his office is providing guidance to us prescribed by Governor Cuomo’s Executive Orders and that he is not authorized to allow for a more lenient interpretation of the Governor’s Orders.  As soon as we receive additional written guidance from the County Executive’s Office we will share with you a more thorough analysis of our Graduation Planning options.

Dutchess County Contact Tracing

We have received the following communication from the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral and Community Health asking us to help spread the word on their need to recruit volunteers to help with their contact tracing efforts.  Here is the message they would like us to share:  

“During the current COVID-19 pandemic, hundreds of residents have signed up to volunteer to help their neighbors – either through the Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) of Dutchess County or through our Dutchess Responds relief effort. We thank you for your dedication to service and for answering the call to assist your community.

In order for Dutchess County and the Mid-Hudson Region to begin re-opening in phases and importantly to contain COVID-19 and prevent further spread, we are in vital need of individuals to serve as contact tracers, who can work remotely and telephone residents who may have been exposed to COVID-positive individuals.

New York State will not allow our county or our region to begin Phase One of reopening until we can prove we have sufficient residents willing to serve as contract tracers.    If you would be willing to take a 4-hour training to fill this critical gap and help our community take the next step in the re-opening process, please send your name, email address, and cell phone number to dcpersonnel@dutchessny.gov.”

US Government Census

Our County Officials are asking School Districts to remind our families about the importance of completing the US Census.  The final numbers will determine how federal funding gets divided across the country. Congressional and legislative districts will be redrawn based on the figures as well. Invitations to respond to the census have been going out through the mail.  The invitation provides instructions (including giving you a census ID code) to complete the form. But you can fill out the form without the code by going to My2020Census.gov and using the "If you do not have a Census ID” link and following the prompts. 

It only takes a few minutes to complete the online form, your personal information is kept confidential, and you can complete it over the phone or via mail if you like. Census assistance numbers are: 844-330-2020 for English; 844-468-2020 para Espanol.


Sincerely,

Jose L. Carrion 

Superintendent of Schools