(January 8, 2021)
Dear Chatham families,
I am writing to inform you that all Chatham Central School District schools will pivot to fully-remote instruction, starting Monday, January 11 and lasting through Friday, January 22, 2021. It is because we value the safety of our staff and our students and the integrity of our instructional program that I have made this difficult decision.
As I have mentioned before, we closely monitor the COVID-19 situation in our area and weigh its potential impact on our schools. This week we have seen the number of daily new infections in Columbia County climb dramatically. According to the Columbia County Department of Health’s website, between Wednesday and Thursday, the county saw a total of 147 new infections reported. As of today, our area has not been determined to be a cluster zone, however that means Chatham Central School District is currently ineligible to receive test kits to conduct surveillance testing within our schools and ensure that the infection rate among our students and staff is below that of the larger community. In addition, a growing number of staff have come under quarantine due to exposures taking place outside of the school setting, which has placed additional strain on our ability to operate in-person instruction both safely and effectively. For these reasons, we have unfortunately found it necessary to temporarily pause in-person instruction at CCSD, with the exception of self-contained special education classes.
Self-contained Special Education Classes
In-person instruction will continue for Chatham’s self-contained special education students in Mrs. Winter’s and Mr. Botsford’s classes at MED, Mrs. Thorsen’s class at CMS, and Mrs. Rossi’s class at CHS. These students will attend class from 8:00-11:30 a.m. Monday through Friday.
We are planning to provide a limited amount of childcare/learning support for MED families who need a safe, supervised location for their child(ren) to access remote-only instruction from Tuesday, January 12 through Friday, January 22. This service will be available for Chatham students in grades K-3 from 7:40 a.m.- 2:30 p.m. at MED. Please note that there will be NO TRANSPORTATION available for this program. MED will be providing our K-3 families with more information.
As with every day school is in session, grab-and-go meals are available for our remote-learning students at no cost. Pick up is from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the MED Elementary School front door. Please email or call Barb Murray (firstname.lastname@example.org, 518-392-1536) to reserve your meals.
We will continue to provide transportation for our self-contained special education students and for CTE, private/parochial school, and other out-of-district-placed students.
It is important for our families and staff to continue to fill out the daily health screening form.
If your child receives a positive COVID-19 test, please reach out to your school nurse or building principal to report it as soon as possible.
District and building offices will remain staffed and open. Please continue to contact your school’s office if you have any questions.