Superintendent’s Message: Travel guidelines, year-end activities and budget development

March 23, 2021

Dear DCS Community: 

I hope that you are all enjoying the warmer weather and, with the increase in vaccinations and decrease of transmission rates in the area, are starting to feel more optimistic about a return to more normal activities. I want to thank you all for your continued partnership in following our safety protocols–this has made it possible for us to be open all year long (with some minor blips, of course) while other districts in the state have only just recently returned to school. Here are some recent updates: 

New Domestic Travel Guidelines

As of April 1, domestic travelers entering New York from another U.S. State or Territory are no longer required to quarantine. The international travel advisory still exists. If your family is traveling during Spring Break, please make sure to continue to follow COVID safety guidelines so that we do not experience an uptick in cases following the break. 

CDC Social Distancing Guidelines

You may have heard that the CDC recently released guidelines that relax social distancing requirements in schools from 6 feet to 3 feet in elementary schools and secondary schools in areas that do not have high transmission rates (please note that our area is still considered a high transmission area by the CDC). The New York State Department of Health is currently considering this change. We are currently evaluating what these changes might look like in our elementary school and will communicate any changes with you before they are implemented. 

State Tests

As I have stated in recent communications, 3-8 State Assessments will still be administered, though they will be considerably briefer in the past. At the secondary level, only four exams will be administered and even those exams will not have an impact on student grades or graduation. Please be on the lookout for further communication from building principals. 

21-22 Budget

We have been conducting budget workshops in BOE meetings on individual sections of our 21-22 budget since January. A summary of those presentations and links to recordings can be found online here. We will be conducting our  Community Budget Presentation on March 23. Our School Budget Vote will be held on May 18th in the Jr./Sr. High School Gym. 

Athletics

As you may know, we have just begun our Fall II season and are very excited that our student-athletes will have the chance to compete. Spectators are still prohibited from attending indoor events, but each athlete can bring two spectators apiece to outdoor events. Spectators are reminded to socially distance and wear masks at events. These restrictions will also be in place during the Spring season. Please follow each team’s standings on our rSchool page

EOY Activities

We are currently planning for several outdoor in-person end of the year activities. Fifth and Sixth grade Moving Up ceremonies will take place on June 17th and 18th, respectively. Prom will take place on campus under a tent on June 23 and Graduation will take place under the very same tent on June 25. Though these events will look different than in the past, we are still very excited to celebrate the accomplishments of our students.

Cheers, 

Jim Niedermeier, Ed.D.
Superintendent
Duanesburg CSD