Oneida-Herkimer-Madison BOCES reacts to reopening guidelines

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Before complete reopening guidance is released later this week, districts have been trying to build some kind of plan.

The Oneida-Herkimer-Madison BOCES Superintendent said she hopes schools get more clarity.
“The framework indicates we’re going to have to screen students,” said Dr. Patricia Kilburn, district superintendent. “Department of Health guidance is more clear and says student temperatures will have to be taken. So, it will be interesting to see when the state guidance comes out how they clarify what the Department of Health has to say.”

Districts will have two weeks to create their reopening plan.

The BOCES doesn’t submit one themselves, but their job is to keep all the districts informed during the process.

“If they have any of what we call kickback if anything comes back, let’s say they need further clarification on the question or the state’s requesting more detail, I can work with superintendents to help provide that information for the state or help the superintendents’ completion or submission of any of their reports,” said Kilburn.

To this point, she said districts have already been building their plan without guidance.
“We were already anticipating our students would have to wear masks. We’ve already been anticipating that, to some extent, we’d have to screen students or provide food to students,” said Kilburn. “We know that the main priority for all of us has to be the social and emotional aspects of our students, their learning and wellbeing.”

Like other superintendents, Kilburn said none of this information was new.
“In sum, there’s nothing really new yet in that framework that we haven’t seen, discussed or anticipated,” said Kilburn.

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