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Reopening Plan

 

MESSAGE FROM SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS

REOPENING TIMELINE - Revised 8/10/2020

COMMUNICATION - FAMILY AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT - Revised 8/10/2020

HEALTH AND SAFETY - Revised 8/10/2020

SCHOOL SCHEDULES - Revised 8/10/2020

TEACHING AND LEARNING

SOCIAL EMOTIONAL WELL BEING

TECHNOLOGY AND CONNECTIVITY

TRANSPORTATION

CHILD NUTRITION

SPECIAL EDUCATION

ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS (ELLs)

ATHLETICS AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION (CTE)

FACILITIES

ATTENDANCE AND CHRONIC ABSENTEEISM

STAFFING

TEACHER AND PRINCIPAL EVALUATION SYSTEM (Education Law §3012-D/APPR)

CERTIFICATION, INCIDENTAL TEACHING, AND SUBSTITUTE TEACHING

 


 

 

 

MESSAGE FROM SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS

In all my years of education and as a parent, this has to be the most difficult time I have ever experienced. Our HF Family and the world are facing unprecedented issues that we never thought would have been remotely possible. Our mission to provide our students with a world-class education one child at a time is now more prevalent than ever. I owe to the community an immense debt of gratitude for the patience, support and determination to get through this difficult time. I will never forget!!!

Challenging times, like we are experiencing right now, remind us that it is important to remain laser focused on the educational and emotional needs of ALL students. It is now more important than ever to continue creating and foster culturally responsive, student-centered learning environments that affirm racial, linguistic and cultural identities, in order to prepare students for a future that is completely different than our past.

On Thursday, July 16, the New York State Education Department released guidance to help schools as they plan to reopen, whether that occurs in person, remotely, or a combination of the two. The guidance accounts for the health and safety of our children, teachers and school personnel while encouraging equitable access to the services and resources necessary for a high-quality education. 

In an effort to re-open our schools, and in order to be in compliance with state regulations, I am pleased to present this HF REOPENING PLAN. The document will provide our community with a detailed set of guidelines to assist in the welcoming of our students and staff back. It has been my honor to lead the district HF Ready Task Force and I am grateful for the work that the administration, parents and staff have done to prepare our schools for the reopening of our school doors. 

The HF REOPENING PLAN was created to ensure consistency across the schools and with a specific focus on the health and safety of our students and staff. In this plan you will find specific details and guidelines regarding nutrition, facilities, technology, transportation and school schedules. Many of our areas, such as special education, athletics and extracurricular activities are also aligned with the department of health and Center for Disease Control guidelines. Our plan will remain flexible and provide details and procedures to be implemented in the event we will have to switch from in-person learning to hybrid or online. 

It is important that we continue to work together. If there is one thing that I learned from the COVID-19 experience is that it is impossible to have one size fits all. As our educators and the community review this plan, additional questions and uncertainties will arise. We are committed to working closely to make modifications within the guidelines provided by the state in order to put the necessary support in place to have a successful 2020 - 2021 school year. 

In conclusion, I want to take this opportunity to tell you that serving the Harborfields community throughout this pandemic as your superintendent has been one of the most proud and humbling times in my career. Thank you again for your unyielding commitment and support to our students and educators. 

WE ARE STRONG AND WE ARE THE HF FAMILY!

Sincerely,

Francesco Ianni, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

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REOPENING TIMELINE

May

5/27 - Kick off meeting of HF Ready Task Force.

July

7/13 - Governor Cuomo announced new, data-driven guidance for reopening schools in New York State. 

7/13 - New York State, the Reimagine Education Advisory Council, and the NYS Department of Health released finalized guidance and guiding principles for reopening schools. 

7/16 - NYS Education Department released a comprehensive Recovering, Rebuilding, and Renewing: The Spirit of New York’s Schools Reopening Guidance document.

7/21 - Parent/guardian survey was sent to families to obtain the necessary feedback to best support our students and families and to allow us to modify the plan within the guidelines.

7/31 - School Districts are required to develop flexible reopening plans that must be posted on their website and submitted to NYSED and NYS DOH.

August

8/7 – Governor Cuomo announced that based on the region’s infection rate, schools across the state are permitted to open this fall, under strict guidance from the New York State Department of Health.

8/11 – Harborfields Board of Education Special Meeting / Work Session

8/18 – Harborfields Q&A with the Superintendent

8/19 – Harborfields Board of Education Regular Meeting

September

9/2 - Superintendent’s Conference Days will be held on September 2nd and September 3rd.

9/8 - First day of instruction for students for the 2020-2021 school year.

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COMMUNICATION - FAMILY AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

Regular and frequent communication between schools, families and the community is an essential element of effective family and community engagement. Families and community members had and will continue to have the opportunity to collaborate on the HF Ready Task Force, and all families were provided an opportunity to provide feedback through the use of parent surveys.

In addition, the district office in conjunction with school administrators, community members and local professionals have been involved throughout the planning process to effectively ensure the engagement of all school stakeholders in the development of the reopening plan. Specifically, in May 2020, the HF Ready Task Force was established to create a safe and educationally sound environment to support the students, not only academically, but also socially and emotionally. The task force has continued to work in collaboration with the administration on areas that include, but are not limited to, curriculum, technology, social emotional learning, athletics, special education, communication, online/hybrid operations, regular school operations and nurse operations. The groups involved were:

  • School Administration
  • School Board Members
  • PTA and SEPTA
  • Teachers
  • Staff
  • School and local physicians
  • Supporting staff
  • Technology Team 
  • BOOSTER, HACO
  • Department leader from every school

In order to establish an efficient communication plan to the students, parents or legal guardians of students, staff, visitors, and the community, we have developed the following resources: 

  • Letters from the Superintendent updating the community on the latest information received.
  • The District will continue to utilize the Blackboard ConnectEd Notification System which allows for mass notification of selected groups such as parents/guardians, staff and community members.
    -Parents/guardians will receive appropriate notification based on their child’s grade level enrollment in Infinite Campus. If contact information needs to be updated, parents/guardians should contact the main office of their child’s schools.
    -Staff may update their contact information by notifying Human Resources at 631-754-5320 ext. 322.
    -Non-parent community residents that would like to receive community notifications regarding public meetings and other information relevant to the community at-large can register for the MyConnect portal: https://harborfieldscsd.bbcportal.com/Entry
  • The District will continue to utilize social media outlets such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to provide important updates to the community.
    -Twitter: @HarborfieldsCSD
    -Instagram: harborfields_csd
    -Facebook: Harborfields Central School District
  • Any additional questions or requests for information should be directed to the District Office at 631-754-5320.

In order to communicate and address potential concerns and/or outstanding questions regarding the reopening plan with parents, community members and stakeholders, Harborfields is hosting the following public meetings:

  • August 11, 2020 – Board of Education Special Meeting / Work Session
  • August 18, 2020 – Q&A with the Superintendent
  • August 19, 2020 – Board of Education Regular Meeting

Students will be trained how to follow new COVID-19 protocols safely and correctly, including but not limited to hand hygiene, proper face covering wearing, social distancing, and respiratory hygiene using information from the CDC website, videos and signage posted to the website. This information will be sent to students and families through email and texts.

Faculty and staff have been provided access to an intranet site for employee resources. This intranet site includes training materials, including resources from the CDC such as, but not limited to, proper hand-washing techniques. In addition, a written protocol developed in collaboration with the district physician to instruct staff to observe for signs of illness in students and staff and requires symptomatic persons to be sent to the school nurse or other designated personnel will be distributed to staff. 

Students, faculty, staff, and visitors will be encouraged through verbal and written communication to adhere to CDC and DOH guidance regarding the use of PPE, specifically acceptable face coverings, when a social distance cannot be maintained. Signage from CDC and DOH will be posted on the entrance doors, at the visitor sign-in and throughout the buildings.

Public access to the buildings is limited to essential visitors only. Essential visitors are encouraged to make an appointment prior to entering the building. Signage to adhere to CDC and DOH guidance regarding the use of PPE, specifically acceptable face coverings, and social distancing are posted on the exterior doors and at the visitor sign-in desk, in English and Spanish. This information is posted on the website and has been communicated home through letters from the Superintendent.

The Harborfields Reopening Plan will be posted to the district’s website in a manner that will allow for families and the community to utilize Google Translate. Additionally, the Harborfields website hosted an accessibility widget to allow persons with visual and/or hearing impairments to access the reopening plan.

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HEALTH AND SAFETY

The health and safety of every student and adult within the Harborfields Central School District remains our top priority. This plan carefully balances our desire to have our students in our classrooms working with our faculty and staff with the requirement to do so only in accordance with current safety guidelines of the New York State Department of Health (NYS DOH), New York State Department of Education (NYSED), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While the decision to close the doors to our schools in March was dictated by Executive Order of the Governor, we are faced with decisions that need to be made to safely bring back students and staff within the guidelines. 

The following protocols and procedures will be in place in all schools for the 2020-2021 school year should in-person or hybrid instruction occur. For more information about how health and safety protocols and training will be communicated to students, families and staff members, visit the COMMUNICATION - FAMILY AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT section of our reopening plan.

Determining How Many Students and Staff May Return to School

To consider the number of students and staff permitted to return in person, the following factors will be reviewed when determining resumption of in person instruction:

  • Ability to maintain appropriate social distancing and face coverings; 
  • PPE and face covering availability;
  • Availability of safe transportation, and
  • Local hospital capacity in consultation with the local department of health

Under current guidance as of the publication of this document and in consideration of the factors given above, the district has the ability to operate with approximately 50% of students at the secondary level (6-12), 100% of students at the elementary level (K-5) and 100% of staff in school. It is understood that changes in guidelines and/or rates of infections and hospitalizations within our region may change the number of individuals that may safely occupy our school buildings. This plan addresses the impact that may have on the instructional model the district will implement. The goal of this plan is to allow for a smooth transition between instructional models should that become necessary.

Harborfields’ staff and students are required to wear proper face coverings in alignment with the New York State Department of Health Guidance and New York State Education Department Guidance. The district will maintain protocols and procedures for students, faculty, staff, and other individuals to ensure appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) is used to protect against the transmission of the COVID-19 virus when on school grounds and in school facilities. Students will be permitted to remove their face covering during meals, and for short breaks so long as they maintain appropriate social distance. Acceptable face coverings include but are not limited to cloth-based face coverings (e.g. homemade sewn, quick cut, bandana), and surgical masks that cover both the mouth and nose. Masks will be made available to staff, students, and visitors upon entry to the building.

The availability of safe transportation is addressed later in this plan under the TRANSPORTATION section.

The district will follow the guidance of the local department of health in regards to the local hospital capacity.

Community Engagement

The district has and will continue to engage school stakeholders and community members (administrators, faculty, staff, students, parents/legal guardians, local health department, local health care providers, and affiliated organizations, such as unions, alumni, and/or community-based groups) through the meetings of the HF Ready Task Force in developing the health and safety components of this reopening plan.

Communication Plan

Regular and frequent communication between schools, families and the community is an essential element of effective family and community engagement. Communication regarding the health and safety of the reopening plan will follow along with the COMMUNICATION - COMMUNITY AND FAMILY ENGAGEMENT section in this reopening plan.

Signs of Illness

The district will establish a written protocol that will provide resources to staff members and parents/guardians, such as the Centers for Disease Control’s list of coronavirus symptoms, and instruct staff and parents/guardians to observe for signs of illness in students and staff. Any person exhibiting symptoms is required to be separated from others right away and immediately report to the designated isolation area for the building to be assessed by the school nurse.

People with COVID-19 have a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms will be cared for as if they have COVID-19:

  • Fever or chills (~50% do not present with a fever)
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • A vasculitis type rash has been reported and is more common in school age children

Health Checks/Daily Temperature Screenings

The district will have and distribute, where necessary, written protocols for daily temperature screenings of all students and staff, along with a daily screening questionnaire for faculty, staff and students. 

Students:
All students receiving in-person instruction will be required to have a daily temperature check upon entry to the building with the use of a hands free non-contact digital thermometer. As students enter the building they will be required to step up to the thermometer to get an instant reading with by scanning their forehead or wrist from 2” to 4” away.

The questionnaire will ask all parents to assure that a daily health screening, which includes a daily temperature check, occurred within the home before sending their children to school by answering the questions below.

  1. Has your child experienced any symptoms of COVID-19, including a temperature of greater than 100.0o F, in the past 14 days?
  2. Has your child tested positive through a diagnostic test for COVID-19 test in the past 14 days?
  3. Has your child knowingly been in close or proximate contact in the past 14 days with anyone who has tested positive through a diagnostic test for COVID-19 or had symptoms of COVID-19? 
  4. Has your child traveled internationally or from a state with widespread community transmission of COVID-19 per the New York State Travel Advisory in the past 14 days?

An answer of “Yes” to any of the questions will require that student to remain home and follow the protocol developed in the RETURN TO SCHOOL FROM ILLNESS section of this reopening plan. The student will be able to participate in remote learning during the period of absence from in-person instruction. 

Visitors:
All visitors entering the building will be required to have a daily temperature check upon entry to the building with the use of a hands free non-contact digital thermometer.

Staff:
Staff will be required to monitor their own temperatures prior to arrival on school grounds.

All staff and visitors will be required to answer the screening questions below as well.

  1. Have you experienced any symptoms of COVID-19, including a temperature of greater than 100.0o F, in the past 14 days?
  2. Have you tested positive through a diagnostic test for COVID-19 test in the past 14 days?
  3. Have you knowingly been in close or proximate contact in the past 14 days with anyone who has tested positive through a diagnostic test for COVID-19 or had symptoms of COVID-19? 
  4. Have you traveled internationally or from a state with widespread community transmission of COVID-19 per the New York State Travel Advisory in the past 14 days?

An answer of “Yes” to any of the questions by a staff member will require them to remain home, contact their immediate supervisor and follow the typical protocol for reporting an absence. Staff will then follow the protocol developed in the RETURN TO SCHOOL FROM ILLNESS section of this reopening plan.

An answer of “Yes” to any of the questions by a visitor will result in a denial entry to the building. Only essential visitors will be permitted to enter the building upon passing the screening.

Management of Ill Persons

When a sick person is sent to the Health office, the ill person will be isolated and remain away from others. 

Ill students will be assessed by the school nurse who will ensure that he/she is wearing appropriate PPE. They will remain in the isolation area with continued supervision and care until picked up by a parent/guardian or authorized adult.

Ill faculty and staff members will be assessed by the school nurse and will be sent home to seek medical attention from their own healthcare provider.

Return to School after Illness

The district will follow CDC guidance for allowing a student or staff member to return to school after exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19. If a person was not diagnosed by a healthcare provider with COVID-19 they can return to school:

  • Once there is no fever, without the use of fever reducing medicines, and they have felt well for 24 hours;
  • If they have been diagnosed with another condition and have a healthcare provider written note stating they are clear to return to school

If a person is diagnosed with COVID-19 by a healthcare provider (based on a test or symptoms) OR does not get a COVID-19 test but has had symptoms, they should not be at school and should stay at home until:

  • It has been at least ten days since the individual first had symptoms;
  • It has been at least three days since the individual has had a fever (without fever reducing medicine); and 
  • It has been at least three days since the individual’s symptoms improved, including cough and shortness of breath.

In order for students and staff to return to school after failing one or more of the criteria in the school district’s screening test for symptoms of COVID-19, the district must obtain the following documentation:

  • A record of an evaluation by a healthcare provider clearing the student or staff member to return to school;
  • A result of a negative COVID-19 test;
  • A record of symptom resolutions; or
  • If a student or staff member tests positive for COVID-19, a release from isolation.

The School Nurse shall consult with the district physician regarding all post-COVID return to school instances. 

All persons will follow the New York State Department of Health protocol for returning to school.

Signage

The district will emphasize healthy hygiene practices for students and staff by posting CDC signage through the school (entrances, restrooms, cafeteria, offices, hallways, etc.) In addition, signage will be posted on the REOPENING HF webpage. Signage will be used to remind individuals to:

  • Stay home if they feel sick
  • Cover their nose and mouth with an acceptable face covering
  • Adhere to social distancing guidelines
  • Understand and report symptoms of, or exposure to, COVID-19
  • Follow good hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette
  • Follow clearing and disinfection guidelines

Markings and signage on floors will ensure that staff and students remain six feet apart when waiting to enter the offices, bathrooms, cafeterias, etc.

Social Distancing

Classrooms have been designed to allow for in-person instruction to occur while complying with social distancing requirements (currently set at 6 feet or 3 feet with desk barriers) between individuals. Signage will be placed around the buildings and training will be provided to students and staff to ensure that social distance of 6 feet will be kept between all individuals whenever possible. In limited situations where social distancing is not possible, barriers will be utilized. 

Accommodations for At Risk Individuals

The following groups are at increased risk for complications from COVID-19 and may need added or alternative provisions for social distancing. The district also recognizes that students who have family members who are in high risk groups may also need to attend school remotely. The district will make reasonable accommodations for the needs of these students. Persons in these groups should consult with their healthcare provider regarding prevention: 

  • Individuals age 65 or older; 
  • Pregnant individuals; 
  • Individuals with underlying health conditions including, but not limited to: 
    • chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma 
    • serious heart conditions
    • immunocompromised 
    • severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 or higher) 
    • diabetes 
    • chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis 
    • liver disease
    • sickle cell anemia 
    • children who are medically complex, who have neurologic, genetic, metabolic conditions, or who have congenital heart disease are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 than other children.

It is important for parents/guardians to work with their child’s healthcare providers so that an informed decision can be made on how best to meet the child’s needs at school while protecting their health and safety. 

Face Covering Requirements

All students and staff are required to wear acceptable face coverings at all times. Students and staff are encouraged to bring their own face coverings (cloth masks or surgical masks) but the district will maintain an adequate supply in case of need for replacement. Employees with healthcare provider documentation stating they are not medically able to tolerate face covering are required to notify their supervisor.

Face coverings should not be placed on:

  • Students where such covering would impair their health or mental health, or where such covering would present a challenge, distraction, or obstruction to education services and instruction (healthcare provider documentation is required);
  • Anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious; or 
  • Anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance.

Face coverings will be permitted to be removed during meals only when individuals are appropriately socially distanced.

The district will provide instruction to students, parents/guardians and staff on:

  • The proper way to wear face coverings; 
  • Washing hands before putting on and after removing their face covering; 
  • Proper way to discard disposable face coverings;
  • The importance of routine cleaning of reusable face coverings; and 
  • Face coverings are for individual use only and should not be shared. 

The district will maintain the following recommended quantities of disposable masks.

Group

Number of Individuals  

12-week supply at 100% attendance

12-week supply at 50% attendance

Assumptions

Students  

2,970

35,640

17,820

1 disposable mask per week per student to supplement the cloth mask provided by the parent.

Staff

574

6,888

3,444

1 disposable mask per week per staff member to supplement the cloth mask provided by the staff member

School Nurse

4

480

240

10 disposable masks per week per school nurse. 

Suspected Case of COVID-19

All school nurses will continue to follow Standard Precautions in compliance with CDC recommendations (https://www.cdc.gov/infectioncontrol/basics/standard-precautions.html) and Transmission-Based Precautions as required based on the suspected diagnosis in compliance with CDC recommendations. (https://www.cdc.gov/infectioncontrol/basics/transmission-based-precautions.html). 

If there is a suspected case of COVID-19, nurses will:

  • Wear eye protection in addition to their facemask to ensure the eyes, nose, and mouth are all protected from splashes and sprays of infectious material from others;
  • Wear an N95 or equivalent or higher-level respirator, instead of a facemask whenever possible, especially for aerosol generating procedures such as nebulizer treatments;
  • Gowns will be worn if close contact with the sick person is possible.

Any area and equipment in the nurse’s office that is utilized will be sanitized prior to another person entering that area or using that equipment. The area occupied will be wiped down with an approved disinfectant wipe and the air sprayed in compliance with CDC recommendations (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/disinfecting-building-facility.html). Hand washing and / or hand sanitizer will always be applied before and after treating a person. 

Students suspected of having COVID-19 awaiting transport home by the parent/guardian will be isolated in a room or area separate from others, with a supervising adult present utilizing appropriate PPE. Multiple students suspected of COVID-19 may be in this isolation room if they can be separated by at least 6 feet. Staff who are ill will be evaluated by the school nurse and, if suspected of having COVID-19, will be sent home pending evaluation by their healthcare provider. 

If, for any reason, the school nurse is not available, ill staff and students will be sent home for follow up with a healthcare provider. 

COVID-19 Testing
As per the strong recommendation of the New York State Education Department, Harborfields will comply with CDC guidance and not conduct COVID-19 testing or require testing or antibody testing of students or staff members. Harborfields recommends that students and staff should seek the advice of their healthcare provider or Suffolk County Department of Health regarding the decision of whether a test needs to be conducted.

To find a test site near you: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/find-test-site-near-you

Harborfields will follow CDC Interim Considerations for K-12 School Administrators for SARS-CoV-2 Testing Schools to identify who in the community is responsible for referring, sourcing, and administering testing (e.g., local health department testing site, physician offices, and hospital system) particularly in the event that large-scale testing at the school is needed.

If an individual screens positive to any question on the Daily Health Screening for COVID-19 exposure or symptoms, they should contact their health care professional for further evaluation and COVID-19 test.

For information from the NYS Department of Health regarding COVID-19 Testing, please visit: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing

For information from the Suffolk County Department of Health regarding COVID-19 Testing, please visit:
https://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Departments/Health-Services/Health-Bulletins/Novel-Coronavirus/SCDHS-COVID19-Resources-and-Services

For the NYS Department of Health Next Steps Flyer, please visit:
COVID-19 Testing NEXT STEPS Information (Spanish)

Contact Tracing

Upon confirmation of a positive case of COVID-19, district administration will contact the Suffolk County Department of Health for immediate guidance.

Contact tracing is a public health function performed by local public health departments to trace all persons who had contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19. This allows public health officials to put in place isolation or other measures to limit the spread of the virus. The district will cooperate with state and local health department contact tracing. To assist public health departments in knowing who may have had contact at school with a confirmed case the school district will: 

  • keep accurate attendance records of students and staff members;
  • ensure student schedules are up to date;
  • keep a log of any visitors which includes date, time and where in the school they visited;
  • Assist Suffolk County Department of Health in tracing all contacts of the individual at school in accordance with the protocol, training, and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program. This does not mean the school is required to have staff members take the contract tracing program. Questions should be directed to the local health department;
  • To learn more about the New York State Contact Tracing Program, please visit the website at: https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/new-york-state-contact-tracing

 

Harborfields will maintain confidentiality as required by federal and state law state laws and regulations. Harborfields staff should not try to determine who is to be excluded from school based on contact without guidance and direction from the Suffolk County Department of Health.

Harborfields will cooperate with all state and local health department contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine efforts.

School Closure

The district will work in collaboration with the Suffolk County Department of Health and the school district physician to determine the parameters, conditions or metrics that will require the closure of school buildings. 

Cleaning and Disinfecting

Regular cleaning and disinfection of classrooms, restrooms, cafeterias, libraries, playgrounds, and busses is important to the health and safety of students and staff. The cleaning and disinfecting frequency for each area will be increased and strictly followed in accordance with CDC protocols.

The cleaning and disinfecting of the health office and isolation rooms will take place after each use including the cots, bathroom, and health office equipment. 

High touch surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected frequently throughout the day. Examples of high touch surfaces include (but not limited to):

  • Tables,
  • Doorknobs,
  • Light switches,
  • Countertops,
  • Handles,
  • Desks,
  • Phones,
  • Keyboard and tables,
  • Toilets and restrooms, and 
  • Faucets and sinks.

The CDC provides guidance for workplaces and schools with respect to cleaning and disinfecting

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/pdf/Reopening_America_Guidance.pdf

Safety Drills

Education Law § 807 requires that schools conduct 8 evacuation (fire drills) and 4 lockdown drills each school year. Conducting drills is an important part of keeping students and staff safe in an emergency, however, steps will be taken to minimize the risk of spreading infection while conducting drills. The following considerations will be implemented while conducting safety drills:

  • Conducting drills on a “staggered” schedule, where classrooms evacuate separately rather than all at once, and appropriate distance is kept between students to the evacuation site. 
  • Conducting lockdown drills in classroom setting while maintaining social distancing and using masks;
  • Conducting lockdown drills in classrooms without sheltering but provide an overview of how to shelter or hide in the classroom.

Safety drills will be scheduled to ensure that all students participate in person if schools are operating under a hybrid instructional model. 

COVID-19 Safety Coordinator

The Harborfields Central School District COVID-19 Safety Coordinator is provided below.

Mr. John Valente

Director of Health, Physical Education, and Athletics

[email protected]

631-754-5375

The responsibilities include continuous compliance with all aspects of the school’s reopening plan, as well as a phased-in reopening activities necessary to allow for operational issues to be resolved before activities return to normal or “new normal” levels.

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SCHOOL SCHEDULES

In March 2020, all schools needed to make critical adjustments to their instructional model with little or no time to plan. The Harborfields Reopening Plan for the 2020-21 school year, addresses three possible instructional models: in-person, online, or hybrid (combination of in-person and online). However, the determination of the instructional model that is implemented must be informed by health and safety standards and the most up to date guidance from the New York State Department of Health. Regardless of the setting (in person, hybrid, or online) we are required to operate under, live synchronous instruction will be the preferred method of delivery of instruction. We will continue to prioritize student and staff safety as we do with every decision that is made. 

To maximize in-person instruction, the following measures will be implemented to decrease density and congregation in school facilities and on school grounds, when possible:

  • Determining maximum safe occupancy of each space in accordance with the NYS Department of Health requirements to determine in-person instruction limits. The current social distancing requirements are 20 square feet (SF) per person for a classroom, 15 SF per person for cafeterias, 5-15 SF at gymnasiums.
  • Limiting in-person presence to only those staff who are necessary to be at the school during normal school hours. As a result, visitors to the schools will be restricted to as needed appointments only. Virtual meetings will be the preferred method until further notice. 
  • Creation of student cohorts to accommodate social distancing guidelines for hybrid instructional model.

Regardless of the instructional model implemented, equity and access to in person instruction will be the priority for all students including, but not limited to, students with disabilities, English language learners, and students experiencing homelessness.

Elementary K-5 Schedule (TJL and WDPS)

  • In-person

As of August 7, 2020, schools are permitted to open for in-person instruction if able to comply with CDC, NYS DOH and NYSED guidance, including but not limited to, social distancing. All students will attend in-person and follow their academic schedule for all instructional days.

  • Hybrid

In order to maximize in person instruction and adhere to current guidance regarding maximum safe occupancy and social distancing requirements, Washington Drive Primary School and Thomas J. Lahey Elementary School have developed a hybrid schedule containing elements of remote learning and in-person instruction. Instruction provided in this model will be delivered by the assigned NY State certified teacher.

For this model, students in grades K – 5 will have the opportunity to attend school in-person everyday with a Home Option.

Home Option:

  • The Home Option allows parents/guardian to choose whether to send their children to the school building or to participate in remote learning
  • Children will learn 100% remotely (all online). Remote learning includes live interaction with the teacher every school day following the child’s schedule.
  • Their assigned NYS certified classroom teacher will remain as scheduled
  • Parents must commit to full remote learning for the remainder of the trimester:
    • 1st trimester: September 8, 2020 – December 4, 2020
    • 2nd trimester: December 7, 2020 – March 12, 2021
    • 3rd trimester: March 15, 2021 – June 25, 2021
  • A form will be sent to families of K – 5 students to complete and return indicating their request for the Home Option.

 

This schedule will allow the district to comply with all guidance for maximum occupancy and social distancing requirements while allowing students and faculty to interact each day.

  • Online

Remote instruction will include a combination of daily synchronous instruction using Google Meet and asynchronous instruction using Google Classroom and other software applications. All students will have access to their assigned NYS certified teachers for their instruction. 

Secondary 6-12 Schedule (OMS and HHS)

  • In-person

As of August 7, 2020, schools are permitted to open for in-person instruction if able to comply with CDC, NYS DOH and NYSED guidance, including but not limited to, social distancing. Students that attend in person will follow their academic schedule for all instructional days.

  • Hybrid

In order to maximize in person instruction and adhere to current guidance regarding maximum safe occupancy and social distancing requirements, Oldfield Middle School and Harborfields High School has developed a hybrid schedule containing elements of remote learning and in-person instruction. Instruction provided in this model will be delivered by the assigned NY State certified teacher. For this model, students will be divided into cohorts based on the first initial of their last name – Cohort 1 = A-L and Cohort 2 = M-Z. 

  • GREEN COHORT: Cohort 1 (A-L) will attend school in person on Tuesday and Thursday of each week and follow their established academic schedule in the building. On Wednesday and Friday, Cohort 1 will participate in live synchronous remote learning, following their established academic schedule and participating in a combination of live instruction and supported with some asynchronous learning activities.
  • YELLOW COHORT: Cohort 2 (M-Z) will attend school in person on Wednesday and Friday of each week and follow their established academic schedule in the building. On Tuesday and Thursday Cohort 2 will participate in live synchronous remote learning, following their established academic schedule and participating in a combination of live instruction and supported with some asynchronous learning activities.
  • Each cohort will attend on a rotating basis on Mondays, starting with the GREEN COHORT on Monday September 14, 2020. A separate calendar will be posted to the Reopening HF website indicating the calendar days.

Exceptions to the schedule described above are as follow:

Special Classes (12:1:2) will be held in person each day of the week, Monday through Friday.

  
  • Online: 

Students will follow their academic schedule during remote learning. Remote instruction will include a combination of daily synchronous instruction using Google Meet and asynchronous instruction using Google Classroom and other software applications. All students will have access to NYS certified teachers for their instruction.

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TEACHING AND LEARNING

The Harborfields Reopening Plan for the 2020-21 school year, addresses all instructional models including in-person, hybrid, and online. While we are prepared to open schools under any one of the instructional models (in-person, hybrid, or remote), it is understood that we must also be prepared to shift back to fully remote learning models should circumstances change and school buildings are required to close. 

Common aspects of PK-12 instruction regardless of the model implemented will be as follows:

  • Equity and access to in person instruction will be the priority for all students including, but not limited to, students with disabilities, English language learners, and students experiencing homelessness.
  • All instruction will continue to be aligned with the outcomes in the New York State Standards.
  • As part of the district’s Continuity of Learning plan, all students will have exclusive access to a district provided device during remote learning. Opportunities for live, synchronous learning with certified teachers will be prioritized and supported by recorded, asynchronous instructional activities. The live interactions will provide ample opportunity for students to receive feedback and support from their teachers.
  • To promote clear communication, multiple means of communication will be available at all times. All communication will occur through the district’s website, learning management system (Google Classroom), student management system (Infinite Campus), the district’s communication system (Blackboard Connect), district email, social media (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram), and/or hard copy letters. Messages will be communicated in the home language of our families. In addition, a Chain of Communication document will continue to be posted to our website informing parents how they may best contact individuals in our organization (by email or phone) based upon their specific concern. 

Grade level specific aspects of the plan with regard to teaching and learning are detailed below;

Prekindergarten

The Harborfields Central School district is contracted with two local CBO’s to provide Universal Prekindergarten (UPK). To assure the CBOs have measures in place for safe reopening of schools the district has been in communication with the owners and directors of the program. The CBOs will adhere to the mandatory guidelines set forth in the NYSED guidance information and the guidelines of the New York State Department of Health. District administrators and the district UPK teacher liaison will have on-going meetings and site visits to ensure these practices continue. 

In collaboration with the CBOs, the district has developed three instructional models for the safe reopening of the UPK program, in-person, remote, and hybrid model. Each model adheres to the health and safety guidelines of the New York State Department of Health. All instructional programs are aligned with outcomes of the NYS learning standards. The district is cognizant of the fact that these are our youngest learners and they require special consideration in these areas. 

In-person

Fully implemented UPK program will include 4 classes housed in 2 CBOs as follows: Two (2) am classes of 16 students per class, and two (2) pm classes of 16 students per class. One (1) teacher and one (1) teaching assistant are assigned per classroom. The program is half day consisting of 2 ½ hours. All students will have individual supplies. All social distancing requirements and health and safety protocols will be followed as dictated by the New York State Health Department. 

Hybrid

Students will attend days in cohorts as described in the district’s class schedule plan. Instruction will be offered in-person and virtually and will align with the academic program and NYS Learning standards. All students will have individual supplies. No personal belongings will be left in school, all items will be taken home each day. 

Remote

Students will be placed in a virtual classroom (Google Classroom) to participate in remote learning. Surveys will be given to parents to determine the need for remote learning devices. All instruction will align with the outcomes of the NYS learning standards. The teacher planning the lessons will be mindful of the amount of time students are involved in screen time. Lessons will be posted for exploratory learning, as well as, paper/pencil/crayon, and virtual Google meets with the teacher and classmates. Home language will be considered for dissemination of information via email and Google classroom. 

Regardless of the model, all students will be assessed to guide instruction and a plan will be developed to provide not only academic support but social/emotional support. Before students are assessed lessons will be provided in classroom citizenship and school safety. All students will be part of a virtual classroom when not present with their cohort for in person instruction. 

Training of all staff on health and safety protocols will take place before the start of the school year. All CBO classrooms have an interior bathroom and hand washing protocols will be taught and adults will supervise to ensure that proper hand washing takes place.

Students will have both individual and center based learning experiences. Center based learning will follow guidelines established by the New York State Department of Health for proper sanitizing and safety. Students will have individual supplies and work in areas that allow for appropriate social distancing. Any common/shared items or areas will be sanitized as per sanitation guidelines from the New York State Department of Health.

Grades K-5

For all instructional models, the daily academic schedule will be followed which consists of 40-minute instructional blocks at the elementary level with all instruction aligned to New York State Standards. Any instruction done remotely will emphasize live contact time with each student’s assigned certified teacher to insure that students receive high quality, rigorous, standards based instruction in all subject areas. During remote and hybrid instructional models, students who are participating remotely will receive live synchronous instruction from their assigned NY State certified teacher. This live instruction will be supported by asynchronous instruction in the form of pre-recorded instructional videos and other software applications. All students will have ample opportunity to get feedback and support from their assigned teacher.

If students in grades K-6 are required to shift to full remote instruction, each child will be provided with a district owned Chromebook for their exclusive use.

Regardless of instructional model, each school will employ a reporting mechanism to track teacher and student contact as described in the ATTENDANCE section of this plan.

 

Grades 6-12

Regardless of instructional model, the daily academic schedule will be followed which consists of 40 or 45-minute instructional blocks at the secondary level with all instruction aligned to New York State Standards. Any instruction done remotely will emphasize live contact time with each student’s assigned certified teacher to insure that students receive high quality, rigorous, standards based instruction in all subject areas. During remote and hybrid instructional models, students who are participating remotely will receive live synchronous instruction from their assigned NY State certified teacher. This live instruction will be supported by asynchronous instruction in the form of pre-recorded instructional videos and other software applications. All students will have ample opportunity to get feedback and support from their assigned teacher.

Students in grades 7-12 will be provided with a district owned Chromebook for their exclusive use at both home and school as part of the district’s 1:1 initiative. These students will have exclusive access to the device for use in the event of a shift to full remote learning.

Regardless of instructional model, each school will employ a reporting mechanism to track teacher and student contact as described in the Attendance section of this plan.

Units of Study - Grades 7-12

Per Commissioner’s regulations Part 100.4 and 100.5, all students shall be provided instruction designed to enable them to achieve the State’s learning standards. These regulations outline specific time (unit of study) requirements for various subject areas. The unit of study definition (180 minutes per week or the equivalent) provides a framework for the instructional entitlement for our students in these grades.

During in-person instruction, students receive 200 minutes of instruction per week in grade 9-12 and 225 minutes per week of instruction per week in grades 7 and 8.

The district’s plan for delivery of instruction during hybrid or remote learning models includes the delivery of live synchronous instruction by the assigned NY State certified teacher following the in-person academic schedule. As a result, there should be no reduction in instructional minutes provided. In situations where students who are at home are unable to participate for whatever reason, the New York State Education Department provides the following flexibility:

Instructional experiences are not defined solely as a student’s time spent in front of a teacher or in front of a screen, but time engaged in standards-based learning under the guidance and direction of a teacher. These experiences might include, but are not limited to: completing online modules or tasks; viewing videos; responding to posts or instructor questions; engaging with other class participants in an online or phone discussion; conducting research; doing projects; or meeting with an instructor face to face, via an online platform or by phone. Schools must ensure that the learning is supported, and students have access to assistance from a qualified teacher when they need it. 

The definition of a “unit of study” has been revised in Commissioner’s Regulations to further clarify what may be considered in the design of such units of study. 

Unit of study means at least 180 minutes of instruction per week throughout the school year, or the equivalent. Equivalent shall mean at least 180 minutes of instructional time for instruction delivered in a traditional face to face model or through alternative instructional experiences, including but not limited to through digital technology or blended learning, that represents standards-based learning under the guidance and direction of an appropriately certified teacher. Instructional experiences shall include, but not be limited to: meaningful and frequent interaction with an appropriately certified teacher; academic and other supports designed to meet the needs of the individual student and instructional content that reflects consistent academic expectations as in-person instruction. Any alternative instructional experience must include meaningful feedback on student assignments and methods of tracking student engagement.

Regardless of instructional model, students in grades 7-12 will receive at least 180 minutes of instruction per week to meet the Unit of Study requirements for each subject area.

Science Laboratory Requirements

Per Commissioner’s Regulations, courses that culminate in a Regents examination in science must include 1200 minutes of laboratory experiences. Due to the possibility of a hybrid or fully remote model of instruction as a result of COVID-19, the 1200-minute lab requirement can be met through hands-on laboratory experiences, virtual laboratory experiences, or a combination of virtual and hands-on laboratory experiences coupled with satisfactory lab reports for the 2020-21 school year. The laboratory experience for each course will be aligned with outcomes of the New York State Learning Standards for that course. 

Arts and Music

Given the hands-on nature of Arts instruction, the district has carefully considered both the management of Arts instructional spaces, as well as the development of instructional methods to teach the Arts via remote or hybrid models. For in-person instruction, students will maintain individual kits of “high touch” supplies such as scissors, markers, pencils, erasers, etc. to limit sharing of supplies between students. These supplies could also be taken home and used should there be a shift to remote learning. Every precaution will be taken to prevent the sharing of instruments among students or staff. Guidance will be followed to ensure that a distance of twelve feet in all directions is maintained between individuals while participating in activities requires projecting the voice (e.g., singing), playing a wind instrument. Instruction during remote and hybrid models will include digital and non-digital options for learning. Digital options will include virtual field trips and virtual art collections.

Physical Education

Participating in Physical Education (PE) is important for our students’ health and wellbeing. Not only do PE activities benefit students’ physical health, but research indicates regular physical activity improves students’ mental health as well as contributes to academic success. The district’s reopening plan ensures that whether in-person, remote, or hybrid models are utilized, students will be participating in physical activity under the direction and supervision of their assigned certified physical education teacher. Per New York State Department of Health guidelines the district will ensure that a distance of twelve feet in all directions is maintained during in person instruction between individuals while participating in activities that require aerobic activity and result in heavy breathing. For remote learning in hybrid or remote models, students will be given the opportunity to apply knowledge gained during in person instruction performing activities that require little to no equipment and no physical contact with other individuals. For these models, synchronous instruction will be supported with asynchronous activities. 

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SOCIAL EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING

One core tenet of the Harborfields Family is relationships. Students enjoy strong, supportive relationships with their teachers. The physical space of schools is where shared experiences happen, memories are created, connectedness and relationships are built, and meals are shared. When we quickly pivoted to remote learning in March, one of the reasons school staff found success was because of the existing relationships and connectedness built during the school year. Relationships and connectedness are at the core of our healthiest school communities. We know from experience and the science of learning and development that meaningful relationships are essential for students to grow as learners. The student/staff relationships are the foundation of students’ connectedness to the school community and learning. Staff to staff relationships provides the space for staff collaboration and growth. Student to student relationships allow peers to connect to each other and begin to understand diverse perspectives, helping them become more compassionate human beings. Through the COVID-19 pandemic the importance of the physical space of schools has been amplified. 

It is important to understand the important role that relationships have in our success as a school district. We cannot think of teachers and students as autonomous machines that teach and learn effectively without relationships. Learning requires trust, and trust is built on relationships.

If we are to start the school year in a hybrid or online setting, we will need to intentionally focus time and energy in building relationships. Relationships that are built between students and teachers, between teachers and their colleagues, and between students and their peers are typically formed around unintentional small moments or mutual experiences within the space of the classroom, cafeteria, hallway, or playground. In a remote environment, we must be intentional with allocating time to this important aspect of human interaction and social-emotional mental health support. To accomplish this, teams of teachers will collaborate at each grade level to develop activities around building and strengthening relationships. Our school psychologists, social workers, and guidance counselors will play an integral part in the development of age appropriate activities at each level. The first few weeks of school, if in an online or hybrid setting, will be devoted to building relationships while also allocating time to assess student learning gaps and delivering new content.

The Harborfields Central School District ensures that district-wide and building-level comprehensive developmental school counseling program plans, developed under the direction of certified school counselor(s), have been reviewed and updated to meet current needs. The 2020-2021 Harborfields Central School District's Comprehensive Developmental School Counseling Plan was developed under the consultation of the School Counseling Advisory Committee. This district-level committee consists of administrators, school counselors, and teachers. The committee receives input from each of the buildings through student, staff, and parent surveys on the implementation of our school counseling programs. The 2020-2021 plan was further informed by the work of the HF Ready Task Force regarding the mental health support and social-emotional learning needs of students, staff, and parents.

Considerations for the opening of school that are included in the updated Harborfields Central School District's Comprehensive Developmental School Counseling Plan are highlighted below: 

Mental Health and Trauma-Responsive Practices 

All schools are staffed with social workers, school psychologists, and school counselors who are experienced professionals that have been trained in trauma-responsive practices through the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). These practices have proven to have a positive impact on students' social emotional well-being, and consequently their ability to learn.

Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS)

All buildings have a multi-tiered system of support for students in place. Our proactive approach provides targeted support to all of our students and intensive support for our struggling students. It focuses on the “whole child” and is responsive to the academic and behavioral needs of our students. MTSS supports academic growth and achievement, but it also supports behavior concerns, social and emotional needs, and attendance issues.

The universal interventions, secondary interventions, and tertiary interventions are provided within the Harborfields Central School District's Comprehensive Developmental School Counseling Plan for our elementary program, middle level program, and high school program. 

Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Transformative SEL

Our goal is to educate the whole child. Each building has developed a systematic approach to social emotional learning incorporating mental health and discipline. Common language will be taught throughout all schools in the district to create a SEL vocabulary. When we all use the same words—for emotions, situations, and behavioral dynamics—it promotes empathy and understanding between students, teachers, staff, parents, and the community. Mindfulness practices will be taught to all students and applied across curriculum areas. The goal is to help both teachers and students to reduce stress and anxiety, strengthen attention and focus, support social and emotional growth, and better resolve the inevitable conflicts that arise.

Restorative Practices

All schools have a student-centered approach to discipline emphasizing communication, problem-solving, accountability, and reconciliation. Our approach to discipline is focused on strengthening relationships and effective communication and teaching skills to recognize and repair harm.

Planning and Capacity Building

The updated Harborfields CSD Comprehensive Guidance Plan focuses on the needs of all students to ensure that they can make the most of their educational experience. The K-12 school counseling program includes the key aspects such as academic achievement, career guidance and support for social and emotional challenges. The school counseling advisory committee reviews annually our program to allow for ongoing program development that is directly responsive to student needs.

Adult SEL & Well-Being

Until such time we are permitted to hold large gatherings in a safe manner, the district will work to offer parent and staff workshops to give them the tools and resources to help manage this time of uncertainty and change. Professional development will be provided for staff that can better prepare them to support their own well-being as well as the well-being of the students and families they work with. Resources and materials will be posted to our website and sent home to families to assist them in addressing how to deal with uncertainty and educate people on their own emotional regulation needs.

Student SEL and Well-Being

Each school in the district works tirelessly to create a safe, supportive, and engaging learning environment that nurtures students’ social and emotional learning. Relationships and connectedness are at the core of our healthiest school communities. The student/staff relationships are the foundation of students’ connectedness to the school community and learning. To foster relationship building, teams of teachers will collaborate at each grade level to develop activities around building and strengthening relationships. Our school psychologists, social workers, and guidance counselors will play an integral part in the development of age appropriate activities at each level. In addition, resources and referrals will be made available to parents to address mental health, behavioral, and emotional support services and programs. 

The district will continue to provide staff professional development opportunities on how to talk with and support students during and after the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency, as well as provide supports for developing coping and resilience skills for students, faculty, and staff. 

Using Data for Continuous Improvement

As required in the Commissioner’s Regulations 100.2 for guidance programs, the district will collect and use data as part of the continuous review of the Comprehensive Developmental School Counseling Plan in collaboration with the district’s School Counseling Advisory Committee. The goal of the continuous improvement process is to ensure we are providing the most appropriate support for students, staff, and families to thrive in an instructional model.

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TECHNOLOGY AND CONNECTIVITY

The Harborfields Technology Plan provides a five-year outlook on the district’s commitment to technology integration. Starting with the 2020-2021 school year, the 1:1 chromebook program will be extended to all students in grade 7 - 12. In addition, all students in grades K - 6 will have access to a chromebook device while in school. In the event that we are required to shift to remote instruction, our elementary students in grades K - 6 will take their device home for their exclusive use.

Access to devices is just one part of our initiative. Sufficient access to high-speed internet is also essential for educational equity and that is why we are proud that we were able to provide this service to any household in need. We have, once again, partnered with our internet service provider, Altice, to provide students in need with high-speed internet for the 2020-2021 school year. 

Digital Equity and Access

All students enrolled in a Harborfields school will have access to the internet and a device in order to meaningfully participate in remote learning.

  • Internet access: The school district utilized student, staff, and parent surveys to identify those students and staff in need of high-speed internet access. These families were provided with devices that automatically connect to high-speed WiFi hotspots throughout our community and in their homes ensuring equitable access to remote instruction. This practice will continue for the 2020-2021 school year.
  • Device access: The school district will supply each child with exclusive access to a Chromebook device in a remote learning environment. Teachers will also be provided with a device for their use. 
  • Technology support from home: The district has developed a virtual help desk previously only available to staff that will now be available to students and parents for support with district provided hardware and software. 

Participation in Learning

  • All students will have exclusive access to a Chromebook device as well as access to home or district provided high speed internet. During remote or hybrid models, teachers will provide students with the opportunity to participate in learning and demonstrate mastery of learning in different ways to ensure equity and access for all. This will occur through consistent methods of communication (Google Classroom), predictable and consistent deadlines, and the provision of instruction in multiple modalities (live video instruction, recorded video, recorded audio, written instruction, etc.).

    In specific instances where students do not yet have access to high speed internet, instructional materials will be provided to that family to allow the student to participate in learning and demonstrate mastery of Learning Standards without the use of a device.
  • Demands on family resources will be minimized where possible. Every effort will be made to supply families with materials needed to participate in all learning activities.
  • Understanding that the needs of each family are unique, deadlines for the submission of work will be flexible in remote or hybrid models of instruction.

Student and Staff Data Privacy

  • The district will remain in compliance with all federal and state laws related to technology use including Education Law 2-d and Part 121 of the Commissioner’s Regulations. 

Student, Staff, and Parent Training

  • Consistent with the district’s Professional Learning Plan, all staff will be trained on all aspects of instruction related to in-person, hybrid, and remote instruction.
  • Students and parents will be supported through a combination of in-person training (where practicable), live video workshops, recorded tutorials, and assistance from the district help desk.

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TRANSPORTATION

Transportation is an important component of our school program. Huntington Coach is the transportation company that is used by Harborfields. We have been with Huntington Coach for many years and we truly consider the bus as an extension of the classroom; therefore, many of the recommendations that apply to school buildings (like social distancing and frequent cleaning) apply to the school bus as well. Our reopening plan will include the transportation company’s administration and staff in order to provide consistent protocols. 

  • All buses which are used every day by the district’s contracted transportation company will be cleaned/disinfected once each day, with high contact spots wiped down after each a.m. and p.m. run depending on the disinfection/cleaning schedule.
  • School buses will not be equipped with hand sanitizer due to its combustible composition and potential liability to the carrier or district.
  • School bus drivers, monitors, and attendants will not carry personal bottles of hand sanitizer with them on school buses.
  • School bus drivers, monitors, attendants, and mechanics will be required to wear a face covering along with optional face shield.
  • Transportation staff (drivers, monitors, attendants, mechanics and cleaners) will be trained and provided periodic refreshers on the proper use of personal protective equipment and the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Transportation staff (drivers, monitors, attendants, mechanics and cleaners) will be trained and provided periodic refreshers on the proper use of social distancing.
  • The transportation carrier will provide Personal Protective Equipment such as masks and gloves for their drivers, monitors, and attendants on buses. 
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided for all staff in all transportation locations such as dispatch offices, employee lunch/break rooms and/or bus garages.
  • Gloves will be worn by drivers, monitors, and attendants who must have direct physical contact with a child.
  • School bus drivers, monitors, attendants, and mechanics shall perform a self-health assessment for symptoms of COVID-19 before arriving to work.
  • Students shall wear face masks/coverings on the bus, except students whose physical or mental health would be impaired by wearing a mask. Students whose physical or mental health would be impaired by wearing a mask shall maintain social distancing of six (6) feet from other individuals on the bus.
  • Students who do not have a mask will NOT be denied transportation.
  • Students who do not have a mask will be provided one by the District.
  • Students will be trained and provided periodic reminders on the proper use of personal protective equipment and the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Students will be trained and provided periodic reminders on the proper use of social distancing.
  • If the school district is in session remotely or otherwise, pupil transportation will be provided to nonpublic, parochial, private, charter schools or students whose Individualized Education Program have placed them out of the district and whose schools are meeting by conducting in-person session education when/if the district is not.

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CHILD NUTRITION

One of the main components of a successful educational program is an effective nutrition program. Teachers, staff and community organizations provided tremendous support through this pandemic. We will continue to ensure that students receive nutritious meals throughout the year.

  • All students enrolled in the district will have access to school meals each school day, regardless of whether they are in attendance or learning remotely. Students learning remotely will have access to meal pick-up curbside from the TJL kitchen window. Signs will be posted directing parents/guardians to this site.
  • Food handling and sanitation measures shall be in compliance with CDC and DOH requirements.
  • Staff shall follow protocols to protect students with food allergies for meals provided within and outside of the cafeteria including protocols to prevent cross-contamination and separation via peanut-free designation tables.
  • Signage will be posted to instruct staff and students as to proper hand hygiene before and after eating, and discouraging the sharing of food and beverages.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting will be required prior to the next group of students arriving for meals, if served in the same common area.
  • District will comply with Child Nutrition Program requirements.
  • Communications with families shall be made in multiple means, and will include communication in the languages spoken by families.
  • Students shall be required to maintain social distancing (six feet separation) or less than six feet with physical barriers between students while consuming meals in school.

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SPECIAL EDUCATION

Ensuring a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)

The federal guidance will be followed to ensure that the national health pandemic does not abridge the students with disabilities the availability of a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) and equal opportunity to educational services as their non-disabled peers.

Health and Safety

Students with special needs, parents and staff members will follow the same district health and safety reopening plans to protect all students and staff in the school buildings. The students and staff will engage in safe practices outlined in the health and safety protocols in compliance with CDC guidance. The protocols in the special education settings will be consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those providing special education and services in the in-person and hybrid learning models.

Students in special classes with high needs which include severe deficits in cognition/academics, communication, daily living skills and the social emotional domains which interfere with learning at times may require less than six feet between staff and the student to provide instruction in the in-person or hybrid model. During instruction or support that requires less than 6 feet staff will use additional PPE including, but not limited to, face shields, gloves, and barriers along with appropriate face coverings (masks) as needed for a student’s unique individual needs and required support to access instruction and remain safe. Staff will receive training on the appropriate use and implementation of face shields, gloves, and barriers in the school setting.

During in-person related service sessions the social distancing (6 feet), wearing of masks and alternate means of safe communication with peers and adults will be integrated into individual or small group sessions in the in-person and hybrid models. Students will be grouped consistently with the same peers during related service pull out or push in sessions.

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

Students in special needs in general education classroom settings will continue to receive instruction in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) and be provided instruction and opportunities to learn with their general education grade level peers in the hybrid and remote models.

Mainstream activities will continue to be in alignment with the IEP to the greatest extent possible in the in-person, hybrid and remote models consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those providing special education and services

Parent Communication and Engagement

This reopening plan includes models for students with disabilities in the special classes and general education class settings. Individual concerns regarding a student’s in-person, hybrid or remote programs and progress will be addressed through the Committee of Special Education (CSE) or Committee of Preschool Special Education Committee (CPSE). 

Through the CPSE/CSE/504 committees, program reviews will be scheduled as needed to assure that student’s needs are being met with the current IEP/504 to the greatest extent possible in the in-person, hybrid and remote programs.

 

Parent training sessions and team meetings will be provided as per the students’ IEPs in the in-person, hybrid or virtual model consistent with the protocols outlined in the district health and safety reopening plan. Delivery of services in the in-person or hybrid model will be consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those providing special education and services.

Communication with parents will be in their preferred language or mode of communication regarding the provision of service to his/her child to meet the requirements of the IDEA. 

The CPSE/CSE/504 committees will convene as program reviews and will be scheduled as needed to assure that the students' needs are being met with their current IEP/504 plan to the greatest extent possible in the in-person, hybrid and remote programs.

The parent and school district may agree not to convene a CSE meeting for the purpose of making changes to a student’s IEP and such agreements may be documented through a PWN amendment and the IEP may be changed by amendment.

Reports of progress to parents may be made via telephone or other electronic means if progress reporting procedures specified in the student’s IEP cannot be met with reasonable efforts.

IEP Implementation and Documentation

Specialized programs and related services as per the IEP will be provided to the greatest extent possible within the in- person, hybrid or remote models.

Accommodations, modifications and supplemental aids that are indicated on the IEP will be provided to the greatest extent possible given the in-person, hybrid or remote models.

Student attendance, participation and progress as per respective IEP goals is documented by all special education teachers and related service providers for academic instruction and related services in the in-person, hybrid or remote models.

Students who require augmentative communication devices and/or assistive technology consultation for teachers or parents will receive devices for classroom instruction in the home or school setting as indicated on the student’s IEP during in person, hybrid or remote program models.

Students who need access to a chromebook to access instruction in the in-person, hybrid or remote models will be provided a device.

Compensatory Services 

The CSE will consider the student’s educational progress and achievement on the IEP goals and general education curriculum when determining whether to provide compensatory services. Upon return to school, the use of progress monitoring data, will be reviewed to determine the student’s needs and eligibility for compensatory services.

Students who received a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) through remote learning during a school closure would not be eligible to receive compensatory services. Compensatory services are not determined because services were different in frequency and/or duration as compared with the IEP during remote instruction during the school closure. 

 

Referrals

If the school district suspects a student of having a disability, the district will refer the student for an initial special evaluation and obtain consent for the initial evaluation. A referral may not be warranted if the reason for the referral is due to school closures and a change in the provision of education. All parent referrals and requests for referrals from staff will continue to follow procedures in the Commissioner's regulations section 200.4(a). 

Initials Evaluations/Reevaluation

Initial evaluations and reevaluations will occur in-person, hybrid or remote models upon return to school. Evaluations will be completed with the assurance of the evaluator(s) that the changes in administration will maintain the validity of results.

Collaboration between CPSE/CSE and Program Providers

Written communication will be sent to all CSE/CPSE recommended providers requesting their reopening plan and all contingency plans to address students’ remote learning needs in the event of potential future intermittent or extended school closures.

The district and approved programs serving students with disabilities will collaborate with and communicate with parents and families to ensure that students continue to be provided FAPE consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students and their service providers.

Once plans are reviewed, if there are parent or district concerns with the proposed plan the CSE/CPSE will convene to discuss additional program options and alternatives. 

Medically Fragile and/or Immune Compromised

Any student who is considered medically fragile or immunocompromised will receive due process to develop a plan that will meet the student’s educational needs based on committee discussion and recommendations.

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ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS (ELLs)

School closure due to COVID-19 was extremely challenging for all students, but created particular difficulties for our most vulnerable students, including English Language Learners (ELLs). The district’s plan seeks to address the specific needs of our ELL population and their parents by affording the opportunity for full and equal participation whether it be through an in-person, remote, or hybrid model of instruction. All students, including ELLs, will be assessed early in the 2020-2021 school year to determine learning loss with individual learning plans developed based on the outcomes of those assessments. In addition, instructional Units of Study will be provided to all ELLs based on their most recently measured English Language Proficiency level during in-person or hybrid instructional models.

ELL Identification Process

NYSED has approved temporary emergency regulatory changes to newly enrolled students who need to complete the ELL identification process mandated by Part 154- 2.3(a) at the commencement of the 2020-21 school year. 

  • If schools reopen using in-person instruction or hybrid instruction, the ELL identification process will be required to be completed within 30 school days of the start of the academic school year for all students who enrolled during COVID-19 school closures in 2019-20, as well as all students who enroll during summer of 2020 and during the first 20 school days of the 2020-21 academic school year. After this 20-day flexibility period, schools that reopen using in-person or hybrid instruction will be expected to complete identification of ELLs within the required 10 school days of initial enrollment for all students pursuant to Commissioner’s Regulations Part 154, including the ELL screening, identification, and placement processes. The initial screening process will be followed in person for new entrants following the district’s safety protocols to ensure compliance with the Governor’s Executive Orders and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) health and safety guidelines after commencement of regional reopening. 

Communication and Language Access

All communications for parents/guardians of ELLs will be in their preferred language and mode of communication. 

The district will provide regular communication and updates to the families and community using resources such as:

  • Letters from the Superintendent will continue to be sent via email, as appropriate, and posted to the website as important updates are received.
  • The District will continue to utilize the Blackboard ConnectEd Notification System which allows for mass notification of selected groups such as parents/guardians, staff and community members.
    -Parents/guardians will receive appropriate notification based on their child’s grade level enrollment in Infinite Campus. If contact information needs to be updated, please contact the main office of your child’s schools.
  • The District will continue to utilize social media outlets such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to provide updates to the community.
    -Twitter: @HarborfieldsCSD
    -Instagram: harborfields_csd
    -Facebook: Harborfields Central School District

Family Partnership and Communication

Relationships with parents is one aspect of our educational program that makes us strong and allows us to thrive in even the toughest situations such as the COVID-19 related school closures. To continue to strengthen the home school partnership, the district will continue to create and disseminate parent/guardian resources in the language most frequently spoken by our ELL population (Spanish) on how to access technology used in remote instruction. These resources will be posted to the district website.

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ATHLETICS AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES 

In late July, the New York Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) presented an amended plan for athletics for the 2020-21 school year. In accordance with this plan, Fall sports, if permitted, will start on September 21, 2020 provided the infection rate remains below the threshold. The district will follow the guidelines for the implementation of our athletic program promulgated by NYSPHSAA within the health and safety guidelines of the New York State Department of Health. 

The district will hold extracurricular activities and athletic practices and games during in-person or hybrid settings, if permitted. If school buildings are closed for any reason (including the shift to remote instruction), all athletic and extracurricular activities will be held remotely.

Any in-person athletics and extracurricular activities will require students to adhere to all guidelines of the New York State Department of Health to ensure the safety of staff and students.

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CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION (CTE)

The district is committed to providing appropriate CTE instruction in our in-person, remote, and hybrid models. Specific information as it pertains to our Career and Technical Education Programs are outlined below.

On-site Programs/Courses Harborfields Business and Entrepreneurship Academy

The Harborfields Business & Entrepreneurship Academy is a NY State approved pathway which allows students to earn a CTE designation. Students complete businesses courses taught by appropriately certified Harborfields High School teachers. Students will have the opportunity to take certification exams in-person or virtually. Additionally, students take part in work-based learning opportunities that are supervised by our work-based learning coordinator and student mentors.

Regarding work-based learning opportunities, our work-based learning coordinator is working with community partners to place our students in-person wherever feasible and locate mentors/partnerships who have the ability to work with students remotely as well. Our work-based learning coordinator will also be working with students in-person and remotely on individual bases to monitor their progress in work-based learning

Off-Site programs - Programs offered through Western Suffolk BOCES and Nassau BOCES

For the 2020-2021 school year, Harborfields students are participating in CTE programs that require them to be off-site for half of the school day. Participating students are spread out among 4 different locations through Western Suffolk Boces and the LIHSA program through Nassau BOCES. Our students will follow the model of instruction provided by these schools. The district remains committed to safely transporting students to and from all in-person school classes at off-site locations.

Students enrolled in CTE programs will attend school with their assigned cohort. Their schedules are already constructed to allow them to attend their specific programs on those days with transportation provided by the district at the appropriate time. Students who travel off-site in the morning will arrive as they normally would and board a bus to their off-site campus. Upon their return, they would attend their in-person classes in the afternoon. Students who travel off-site in the afternoon will attend classes with their cohort in the morning before traveling offsite in the afternoon with district-provided transportation. 

During the implementation of our hybrid instructional model, students who are scheduled for a remote learning day will attend off-site programs in the morning session. Upon their return, students will report to a designated area of the school where they will be able to engage in their remote learning schedule in a safe, supervised setting. 

For students who are scheduled for a remote learning day who attend off-site programs in the afternoon, families will be provided with the option of arranging transportation to school just prior to their bus departure time and be bussed as normal, or arriving as per their normal schedule and reporting to a designated area of the school where they will be able to engage in their remote learning schedule.

To effectively limit the number of people within our buildings, all Industry Advisory Board meetings scheduled for the 2020-2021 school year will be held virtually. 

For the remote learning instructional model, instruction will be synchronous for CTE classes offered at Harborfields High School. Asynchronous instruction may also be provided as necessary to support students and parents. Students will follow their current schedule and instruction will be provided by the certified faculty at Harborfields High School. Close collaboration with our off-site program partners will take place to address the best way for our students to receive instruction in their program.

Work-Based Learning

  • Supervision: Harborfields’ work-based learning program is supervised by an appropriately certified work-based learning coordinator. Students can participate in two NYSED approved registered internship programs, Career Exploration Internship Program (CEIP) for 54 hours or Cooperative CTE Work Experience Program (CO-OP) for 150 hours.
  • Work-site placements: Work-site placements will take place in virtual or hybrid settings where strict compliance with New York State Department of Health guidance is feasible. In conjunction with the work-based learning coordinator, work-site mentors will modify requirements to provide students with a virtual experience or a hybrid experience using a combination of in-person and remote learning to adhere to proper social distancing guidelines. Any student participating in an in-person or hybrid internship will be required to wear necessary PPE that will be provided by the internship mentor and approved by the work-based learning coordinator and the school. Internship Memo of Agreements (MOAs) will be updated to reflect these changes. 
  • Flexibility in program requirements: Students will have the opportunity to complete NYSED registered internships virtually or in a hybrid setting. In addition to internship hours, students will be able to complete online assignments, projects, interviews, and simulations with feedback from workplace mentors to fulfill the minimum hours requirement. Students will virtually meet with the work-based learning coordinator bi-weekly to review internship progress. Site-visits and meetings between the work-based learning coordinator, internship mentor, and student will be completed virtually. Students will submit timesheets and all other program documents electronically. 
  • Considerations for Students with Disabilities: Students with disabilities seeking a CDOS Commencement credential will be supervised collaboratively by the work-based learning coordinator, transition coordinator, and special education teacher to provide meaningful virtual or hybrid experiences in conjunction with each student’s IEP. The work-based learning coordinator monitors all students in registered and non-registered work-based learning experiences to meet the 216 hour requirement (including 54 hours of work-based learning). Career Plans and Employability Profiles will be continued virtually and monitored by the work-based learning coordinator, transition coordinator, and special education teacher. 
  • Business and Community Partnerships: The Harborfields Industry Advisory Board (IAB) will continue in a virtual format. IAB student career events will be offered to students virtually. Students will interact with IAB guest speakers virtually and be provided the ability to view recorded presentations of speakers as well.
  • Student Career Development: Students will have the opportunity to participate in virtual events, including career fairs, hear from guest speakers in a variety or professions, and participate in career interviews and job shadowing. Students also have the opportunity to participate in DECA, a Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO), to explore further opportunities in career development and leadership. Students enrolled in the Career Awareness course will utilize the Career and Financial Management framework to enrich career development virtually in the areas of career exploration, job seeking, on the job practices, and safety at work through the use of simulations, guest speakers, video conferencing, and online collaboration. 

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FACILITIES

In order to create a safe environment for our students and staff during the COVID 19 pandemic and beyond, our facilities operations will be geared toward meeting social distancing requirements and cleaning frequently throughout the schools. The maintenance of facilities and the cleanliness of each and every single room in our school is a top priority when creating a reopening plan. 

Our schools and our physical spaces have not undergone alterations of a structural nature. Instead, in order to comply with health and CDC requirements, some of the furniture has been removed from some spaces; in other cases, spaces are being utilized which have not been utilized in the past. 

The district is in compliance with the 2020 Building Condition Survey and Visual Inspection, as applicable.

The district is in compliance with the requirements of the 2020 New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code (BC) and the State Energy Conservation Code. Any changes are in compliance with the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code (BC) and the State Energy Conservation Code. 

The district’s Lead-In-Water testing as required by the NYS DOH has been conducted aligned with regulation 67-4, and the appropriate modifications/signage have been addressed in accordance with the District’s Lead in Drinking Water Sampling and Remediation Plan. 

As part of the reopening plan the district will ensure that all existing and new Alcohol-based Hand-Rub Dispensers which are installed in our schools are in accordance with FCNYS 2020 Section 5705.5.

In the event that we will have installation of dividers in classrooms, libraries, cafeterias, auditoriums, gymnasiums, doors, and other points of congregation, we will ensure the submission of detailed floor plans to the Office of Facilities Planning (OFP) for review. Additionally any new building construction and temporary quarters project will be submitted to OFP for a full code review. In the event the District decides to employ the temporary or permanent use of tents, the district will adhere to the Building Code of NYS (BCNYS). Should the district decide to lease, the district will consult with OFP for a preliminary evaluation of such space. With the high demand for social distancing, it is also important to note that our current toilet and sink facilities meet the standards of the BCNYS. 

The drinking fountains, water coolers and/or bottle filling stations meet the requirements of the BCNYS. 

As part of our reopening plan in order to ensure that we maintain adequate and code-required ventilation as designed, the district will take the following actions:

  • Ensure all of our existing units are in good working order and comply with current code as far as sequence of operation and fresh air intake damper operation. 
  • Increase the outdoor air ventilation rates at any H&V units, unit ventilators, and HVAC units.
  • Increase fresh air intakes during appropriate weather conditions and disable any demand control ventilation, or CO2 sensor controls, which limit fresh air based upon the amount of carbon dioxide in a space.
  • Increase the frequency of filter replacement and keep the systems running longer, possibly even 24/7, in order to flush out the buildings.
  • Run all exhaust fans up to 24/7 in order to keep the building under negative pressure, promoting additional ventilation air to be brought in.
  • Rooms that do not have enough ventilation will have portable room air cleaners with HEPA filters or high efficiency MERV filters.
  • Maintain humidity levels between 40% and 60%, especially during the heating season.
  • Open windows to improve ventilation, as long as the open windows do not create a health and safety risk.

Any project submissions to the New York State Office of Facilities Planning which are dedicated only to “COVID-19 Repoening” will be labeled as such.

The use of plastic separators/barriers shall comply with the 2020 BCNYS Section 2606.

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ATTENDANCE AND CHRONIC ABSENTEEISM

Attendance for Instructional Purposes

  • For in-person learning and the in-person days of a hybrid model, daily student attendance will be collected and reported as per building policy and procedures established prior to the school closure. All record keeping by the teacher of record will be entered accurately and daily through Infinite Campus.
  • For remote learning and the remote portion of the hybrid learning model, appropriate daily teacher/student engagement will be monitored by the Teacher of Record and recorded through Infinite Campus as positive daily attendance if the student was engaged in learning.

Attendance for Reporting Purposes

  • Daily attendance will be recorded in Infinite Campus by the Teacher of Record for each class period. This information will be reported to SIRS through the Student Daily Attendance template as per state reporting requirements.

Chronic Absenteeism

  • The Board of Education recognizes the importance between class attendance and student performance. In monitoring attendance, if students are not engaged in remote learning, staff will continue to outreach parents/guardians in a variety of methods. Teachers shall contact parents/guardians through phone and email contact to offer resources and assess student needs. If unsuccessful, teachers shall reach out to additional school supports, including but not limited to guidance counselors, social workers, and/or psychologists. As needed, building administration should be included in communicating with families through additional means such as certified letters or hand delivered letters. Communication shall be offered in the families primary language if necessary. Support should be provided to parents/guardians to address the barriers to attendance for in-person learning or engagement in remote learning.

Educational Neglect and/or Persons in Need of Supervision (PINS)

  • Any concerns of educational neglect or PINS proceeding should be addressed with the building Principal.
  • LDSS point of contact for Suffolk County:
    Brian Calo, Casework Supervisor 631-854-9311, [email protected]

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STAFFING

For the 2020-2021 school year, for in-person, remote or hybrid instruction models, the District will ensure that:

  • all teachers, school district leaders, and pupil personnel service professionals hold a valid and appropriate certification for their assignment as identified on the SIRS 329 Staff Certifications Report
  • incidental teaching will be utilized when no certified or qualified teacher is available after extensive and documented recruitment, for a period not to exceed ten (10) classroom hours per week
  • only NYS certified substitute teachers will be employed as per district practice
  • we will continue to work with educator preparation programs to identify appropriate ways in which student teachers can support classroom instruction under the direct supervision of a a certified teacher
  • we will review the currently approved APPR plan and revise as necessary to be consistent with this reopening plan

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TEACHER AND PRINCIPAL EVALUATION SYSTEM (Education Law §3012-D/APPR)

For the 2020-2021 school year, for in-person, remote or hybrid instruction models, the District will ensure that:

  • The currently approved APPR plan will be fully implemented

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CERTIFICATION, INCIDENTAL TEACHING, AND SUBSTITUTE TEACHING

The Harborfields Central School District will ensure that all teachers hold valid and appropriate certificates for their teaching assignments except where otherwise allowable under the Commissioner’s regulations (e.g., incidental teaching) or Education Law.

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