Letter to Families & Staff; 10-29-2021

Dear Families,

Last night we were able to celebrate and enjoy our first school musical performance, with an audience, in over a year. It was so nice to see and hear our students demonstrate their talents. This letter contains important information from our district about: Our RCS Health Offices, Halloween Safety Tips, COVID-19 Protocol Reminders, Upcoming Important Dates, Information About the Flu, Winter Sports, Fall-Winter Events, and RCS COVID-19 Testing Consent Form. 

All the information in this letter, from past letters and more, can be found on our website

Our RCS Health Offices:  I want to take a moment to thank all our school nurses for the exceptional work they have done, and continue to do, to meet the health and safety needs of our students, staff, and families at RCS. Their service throughout this health crisis has been exemplary and, for that, we are so grateful. Currently, our nurses are frequently the initial direct contact with families when it comes to notifying them about COVID-19 quarantine, exclusion, and other safety protocols. In doing so they are operating under guidelines and direction from local, state, and national public health departments. We fully realize that these messages are often difficult and result in complications and frustrations. Please remember that our nurses are the messengers. They are doing a difficult job during extraordinary times, and their fundamental concern is the safety and welfare of our children. They deserve and should be afforded kindness, caring, and compassion. 

Halloween Safety Tips: We wanted to take a moment to wish our entire RCS Community a safe and happy Halloween! The New York State Division of Consumer Protection has shared tips for a safe Halloween weekend. You can find those safety tips on our website here

COVID-19 Protocol Reminders: You can find the most up-to-date COVID-19 protocols for RCS on our website here, including information about student work when in quarantine. We created the COVID-19 Illness, Isolation, and Quarantine Guidance Charts to help families understand this guidance. Please remember that if a student or staff member is sick, they should not come to school/work that day. You can access the NYS Department of Health guide to exposure and contact tracing here

Upcoming Important Dates

  • Tuesday, November 2: Staff Development Day - No students in attendance

  • Thursday, November 11: Veterans Day - No School

  • Friday, November 12: End of the first marking period for MS/HS and end of the first trimester for PK-5

  • Wed., November 24 - Fri., November 26: Thanksgiving Break - No School

  • Tuesday, November 30: Parent Conferences, early dismissal for students PK - grade 8.

Information About the Flu: As the days grow colder, and we spend more time inside, students, staff, and families have a higher chance of contracting the flu. Although the current COVID-19 preventative measures help contain the spread of the flu, it is important that we all do our part to keep our community healthy. We have provided families with resources on how to prevent and combat the flu on our health service page here

Winter Sports: We sent home information regarding winter sports registration to qualifying grades via email, you can find that information on our website here. Registration is now open for all winter sports. The in-school winter sports physicals for students who cannot be seen by their Doctor were originally scheduled for Tuesday, November 9th, and have been moved to Friday, November 12th. To make an appointment, contact your student’s nurse.

Fall-Winter Events:  As we move through the fall you will see an increase in events for our students, staff, and families. These events, both indoors and outdoors, will include celebrations, recognitions, sporting events, concerts, field trips, and more. We are excited to come back together. Safety protocols may look a little different for each event based on the setting and circumstances in order to help us limit possible exposure of participants and spectators. Limiting the spread and keeping our schools open will continue to be our priority.

RCS COVID-19 Testing Consent Form: We have shared with families via email a COVID-19 Testing Consent Form that will allow us to test your student for COVID-19 at school for screening and/or diagnostics purposes. You can find more information here. All students can participate in testing, regardless of their vaccination status, and families can opt-in or opt-out of the testing at any time. The company that makes the test has provided information about the saliva-based test for parents here and a FAQ here. If you are not able to locate the form and are unable to print it from our website, please contact your child’s main office for another copy. Please submit this consent form as soon as possible. Families will be notified before testing begins.  

We appreciate your support for our students and staff. If you have any questions about anything covered in the letter, please reach out to your student’s building for clarification. Thank you and have a happy and safe Halloween, 

Brian Bailey, Ed.D. 

Superintendent of Schools