Superintendent's message: Back to school 2021

Greetings from the Otselic Valley Central School District Office. This week the district received notice from the State of New York that schools may reopen under the guidance of local government. At this time, the district will reopen school in September. The mask and social distancing requirements used at the end of the last school year will continue. Staff, students, and visitors will be required to wear masks indoors regardless of vaccination status. Additionally, we will not be offering a remote option for students.
Because things continue to change daily, all are encouraged to check our public information platforms throughout the school year for all the latest news and updates: our website is www.ovcs.org, and our district Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/OtselicValleyCentralSchool.
Our reopening plan includes the requirement that anyone on our buses or in our building must wear a mask unless they are socially distanced. As before, we will follow Chenango County guidance.  The good news is that we have arranged our rooms, altered schedules, and changed how students move around in the building so that once students are at their desks or socially distanced, they may remove their masks. This will all be familiar to students.  
At this time families will need to continue to monitor their child's health. If your child has symptoms, they are required to stay home. Staff will also be required to stay home if they are ill. Visitors will only be allowed in the building with an appointment. As guidance from the state and county changes, we may need to complete daily health questionnaires and temperature checks.
I cannot stress enough the importance of keeping your children home if they have a fever or exhibit COVID-19 symptoms. If the school must send students home with these symptoms, they will then be required to be tested for COVID-19 and if tested positive, they will be required to quarantine.  
Despite the ongoing pandemic concerns at the district and across the community, we are committed to educating our students. Otselic Valley is implementing some changes to our academics that will promote increased student growth and understanding.  Students will be provided additional classroom interventions to assist with learning loss during the pandemic.  Students will have access to after school tutoring and we will continue After the Bell, our highly successful after school program sessions to help students remain excited about school. We will continue our literacy initiatives and look forward to new programs promoting reading and composition. As I write this, athletics are still on track to continue as planned with a normal soccer season starting in the fall.
Although the school year will again be starting differently compared to pre-COVID years, we will be working hard to give every student the opportunity to make this school year as normal as possible. Otselic Valley’s staff is focused and inspired, and they are all committed to educating and empowering our students in this upcoming school year even as we work to preserve the health and safety of all.
Georgia Gonzalez
Superintendent of Schools

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