Dear Putnam Valley Community:

I’m hopeful that everyone is doing well and looking forward to the upcoming holiday weekend.  Please see this week’s updates.  Please take care and stay well.

Adopted Budget – The district was forced to make some difficult decisions in response to an estimated loss of $1.2 million in state aid for the upcoming school year.  These cuts will impact staffing, programs, class size, professional development, and extracurricular activities.  While we are hopeful that additional aid may allow us to restore some of those cuts, we are also aware that an additional $1.8 million in state aid cuts is a possibility, and we need to be prepared if that becomes a reality.  It is extremely difficult to cut expenses during this COVID crisis when we know students will need more support when school reopens.  Detailed information on the adopted school budget can be found at www.pvcsd.org. Look for your absentee ballots to come in the mail.

Graduation/Moving-up Ceremonies – More detailed information on our High School graduation ceremony will be shared in a separate communication.  To summarize, we are prepared to offer two different “in-person” options for our graduation ceremony.  The decision on which will be allowed, according to the guidance we have from New York State, will be made in the beginning of June.  Our first option will be “socially distanced” ceremonies on the field with limited guests; our second option will allow for individual students to walk across the stage in the Performing Arts Center (PAC) to receive their diploma.  Parents will have an opportunity to accompany their child into the PAC and take photos; a district photographer will also be available for photos.  A slideshow will be created of each student receiving their diploma and combined with pre-recorded speeches into a slideshow that will be shared with everyone.  Another senior event, “Seniorpalooza,” is also being scheduled prior to the graduation date.  Elementary School and Middle School moving-up ceremonies are being completed virtually, but each building is organizing a “Farewell Drive-By” to provide 4th and 8th grade families an opportunity to decorate their cars and drive through the campus so children can say goodbye to their teachers (all teachers will be invited).

Personal Items/School Property/Yearbooks/ETC – Each building is scheduling drive through opportunities later in June for families to pick up personal items that were left behind and to drop off any school property (laptops, library books, etc) they still have.  This will also be an opportunity for students to pick up their yearbooks.  Please be on the lookout for a schedule from your building.

Summer School – The Governor announced that all summer school and extended school year services will be virtual this summer.  We will be altering our plans and communicating with those families who were scheduled to participate in these summer programs.

Reopening of School – The district has already begun developing plans in preparation for next school year.  We are working closely with both private and public consultants to guide these decisions.  We anticipate additional guidance to be provided by New York State in June.  We are in the process of finalizing our framework for our “Re-entry Task Force”, which is scheduled to meet in the beginning of June.

Social Distancing/Face Covering – We received a reminder from the Putnam County Department of Health reminding everyone to continue to take the necessary precautions during the upcoming Memorial Day Weekend.  Everyone wants to be with friends and family, enjoying the nice weather, but we are reminded that our actions this weekend could have a direct impact on our ability to hold activities like graduation a month from now.  We have attached two informational flyers to this message.

Thank you,
Dr. Jeremy Luft
Superintendent of Schools

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