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Important BCHS COVID Update – Friday, Oct. 23

Filed in Archive, District, District News by on October 23, 2020

An important message for parents from Superintendent Jody Monroe – Friday, Oct. 23, 2020

Dear BC family:

This week at Bethlehem Central High School there have been three confirmed cases of COVID-19. The Albany County Department of Health so far has linked at least two of the three cases to a party that took place outside of school and to close contact that is taking place, with parent permission, where students are socializing with one another without regard for COVID safety protocols.

In addition, the investigation by the Health Department has been made more difficult by the unwillingness of some students and parents to be truthful or forthcoming about their activities outside of school and/or who they have been in contact with. 

As a direct result, the Health Department is quarantining several classes at the high school, with a total of 73 members of the BCHS community being subject to this precautionary measure. This includes 65 students and 8 teachers in these classes. These individuals will be required to quarantine at home and will be provided with guidance by the Health Department regarding possible testing. Teaching and learning for these individuals will take place online. 

As of this writing, the high school is scheduled to remain open for in-person instruction but will be closed Saturday for deep cleaning. All other schools in the district will also remain open. The Albany County Department of Health will be contacting individuals directly who are required to quarantine. 

Clearly, the impact of relaxed COVID precautions outside of school and questionable decision making can be far-reaching. Dozens of students and teachers will now be displaced and forced online. Other students will lose their in-person teachers to quarantine. And further disruption or quarantine could put our entire reopening plan in jeopardy. Most importantly, the health and safety of students and staff, and their families, have been put at risk. 

As I mentioned in my letter on Thursday, students have been doing an outstanding job of following our COVID safety protocols while at school. It is imperative that students understand when they leave school, these protocols need to continue. Parents, too, must be aware that their role in ensuring our school community remains a safe place is one we take very seriously. Health and safety is a shared responsibility and I am asking for your help in making sure we keep our students, staff and families as safe as possible.

Thank you for your cooperation. Please watch for any updates to this situation that may take place over the next few days and please make this weekend a safe one for all.

Sincerely,

Jody Monroe

Superintendent of Schools