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Letter from GESD Superintendent regarding  student COVID-19 Testing.
Letter from GESD Superintendent regarding student COVID-19 Testing.
Osama Mustafa
Tuesday, December 22, 2020

December 22, 2020

Dear GESD Families:

The current school year has been challenging thus far and we believe it will remain so.  The district will continue to do all we can to provide the best education to the children of Gloversville.  Our hybrid model is the best option we have.  Students who are learning on-site have direct access to their teachers and support staff.  In-person learning (even if it is only two/three days per week) also provides stability and structure for working parents.

We understand that fear of community spread has a number of parents seeking a fully remote option for their children.  We are unable to accommodate a vast majority of such requests due to scheduling and staffing constraints.  I want to remind parents and guardians that GESD has had zero cases of COVID-19 transmission in our schools. Zero.  In fact, I do not believe there is a school district in the HFM region that has had a case of school-related COVID-19 transmission.  The facts speak for themselves.  School is the safest place to be.  That is why
Governor Cuomo, the Health Department, and educational leaders across the country are working hard to keep schools open for in-person learning. The use of masks, PPE, social distancing, disinfecting, hand sanitizing, reduced daily numbers, etc., have all been contributing factors in keeping our schools safe, open, and free of COVID-19 transmission.  

Keeping our schools open in the months ahead may require us to test twenty percent of our students and staff for COVID-19 each month.  This practice is already happening in schools across New York State, but our region has been fortunate and has not yet been designated in the yellow, orange, and red cluster zones.  Once/if we are labeled in such a zone, we will need to commence testing in order to remain open.  

If required to test, we intend to use a free BinaxNOW-19 COVID-19 testing kit for students.  It is a very easy, noninvasive test that will be administered by hospital and district medical staff here at school.  A video of the BinaxNOW-19 test kit can be viewed on YouTube.  There is a permission slip attached to this letter for COVID-19 testing.  This permission form can also be filled out electronically on Family ID. I strongly encourage parents and guardians to grant the
district permission to test children for COVID-19.  If our region is a color zone designated, this will enable us to keep our doors open for in-person instruction.  


Thank you for your continued support and cooperation as we strive to offer the best possible academic programming that the current situation allows.  

Sincerely,
David Halloran
Superintendent of Schools

COVID-19 Student Testing Parental Consent Form