A staff member for the New Paltz Central School District has tested positive for Covid-19, superintendent of schools Angela Urbina-Medina announced in a letter posted to the district’s website last Friday, October 9. The infected individual, who was not identified, was reportedly last present on school property on October 2, at Duzine Elementary School on Sunset Ridge Road.
“At the time, the individual was free of any symptoms and wearing a mask as per the district protocol, and social distancing standards were followed. Our staff member was able to provide us with an account of the areas in the building they were in, along with the names of the individuals that they had contact with,” Urbina-Medina explained. “The Ulster County Department of Health was notified and will handle any contact tracing necessary.”
The superintendent added that the district would double down on already-heightened cleaning protocols for the locations visited by the Covid-positive employee, who was reported to be “only experiencing minor symptoms.”
As of this writing, no mention has been made by the district of any changes to the protocols already planned for a phased reintroduction of elementary and middle school students to in-person learning for the Fall 2020 semester. The plan divides each grade into two “cohorts” of students, each to attend socially distanced live classes two days per week, with another two days devoted to online instruction.
At Duzine, which serves students in kindergarten, first and second grades, Cohort A students will be in school on Mondays and Tuesdays, Cohort B students on Thursdays and Fridays. (Wednesdays are set aside for planning, outreach/interventions and independent projects.) Kindergartners are scheduled to begin in-person classes on October 26 or 29, first-graders on October 27 or 30 and second-graders on November 2 or 5.