Dear Putnam Valley Community:
I am hopeful that this message finds the entire Putnam Valley community well and enjoying their summer. Long before we ended what was certainly a very unsettling school year, plans were already underway to prepare for the reopening of school in the fall. This work has continued throughout the summer, supported by the teachers, parents, administrators, support staff, medical professionals, and public officials that comprised our Reentry Task Force. The development of this plan was guided by the New York State Department of Health, New York State Education Department, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and public health experts. Our reopening plan is designed to bring as many students, as safely as possible, back into our schools and our classrooms, starting with those students who need that experience the most. Please review the attached reopening plan and the attached presentation.
Our primary focus has remained the safety of our students and staff; while any reopening of schools will certainly look and feel different than previous years, our commitment to the health and safety of all students and staff will remain paramount.
We intend to spend the beginning of our school year focused on the social and emotional well-being of our students, helping them transition back into school, teaching them how to remain healthy and safe, sharing our expectations for the upcoming school year, and conducting a needs assessment of each student’s social and emotional health. Initially, academics will take a back seat as we acclimate students back into school and prepare them to be successful during these challenging times.
Every student and staff member will be asked to play a vital role in reopening our schools. It will require the collective effort of the entire Putnam Valley community to ensure that our families stay healthy, our schools remain open, and our students keep learning. We each need to carefully consider the direct impact our actions can have on others and care for those around us.
We will be sharing a survey with parents early next week. We are requesting that each family complete the very short survey to let us know their intentions for next school year. This information is vitally important for us to plan and prepare for the reopening of schools in the fall.
As we continue to learn something new about COVID on a nearly daily basis, the dynamic nature of this pandemic requires our plan to remain flexible. This plan will remain a living document and will be actively revised as new information becomes available. Ultimately, the Governor will make the decision if schools will be allowed to open.
I remain confident that the Putnam Valley community will rise to the challenge as we have done so many times before. We will continue to support our students, support our schools, and most importantly support each other.
Please stay well and take care of yourself and your family this summer.
Dr. Jeremy Luft
Superintendent of Schools