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COVID-19 Cases & Updates



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The Baldwinsville school district is committed to keeping the community updated as we navigate these unprecedented times TOGETHER.

Below you will find ALL email communications from the District during the 2020-21 school year.
 

For more information on everything you need to know about our response to COVID-19 and reopening our schools: CLICK HERE


Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I hope everyone had a wonderful week. It was great to have our Hive and Buzz third-graders unite in-person for the first time this school year. I had a chance to visit all of our elementary schools this week and the students were very excited to be together!

Next week, our hybrid students in fourth and sixth grade will transition back to full time beginning on Monday, April 12, 2021. Our fifth and seventh graders will transition back on Monday, April 19, 2021. 

I wanted to share a few updates with you from this week: 

CNY Central broadcasted a special report on the mental health of students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Senior Colin Delaney was interviewed for the story. Colin has been a student representative on the District’s Mental Wellness Committee since his sophomore year and is one of the panelists for the upcoming screening of “Like,” a film that explores the impact of social media on our lives. We are very proud of Colin’s passion and bravery to take part in the CNY Central’s story and we encourage our families to view the report and discuss the topics. Please take time to watch the broadcast HERE and if you know your student is in need of support please contact our school staff (teachers, social workers, counselors, etc.). 

On Thursday, we met virtually with interested community members for Coffee and Conversation to talk about the general fund budget for the 2021-2022 school year. If you missed it, you can watch the video on our website. Please note the budget vote will be held from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, May 18, 2021 at the District Operations Building (former transportation center located on our main campus at 29 East Oneida Street). The Board of Education is expected to adopt the budget at its regular board meeting on Monday evening, April 12, 2021. 

I wanted to also take this opportunity to give a shout-out to our dedicated music staff. Our District has been recognized for its outstanding commitment to music education with a 2021 Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) designation. This is the 12th consecutive year the District has received this prestigious designation!

I would also like to congratulate our staff members who have reached milestones in their years of service. Your dedication to the District and your commitment to our students deserves to be recognized. Thank you for your service! 

Next week we kick off our District-Wide Spirit Week! We encourage all students -- in-person and remote -- and all staff and families to participate. Let’s show off our B’ville Pride! Share the fun and post photos each day using #BvillePride21 on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. There will be a special Facebook post each day to make sharing your photos easier. At the end of the day a special video featuring some of the photos will be posted on social media.  

Monday: Sports Day: Wear your favorite team or something to do with sports!

Tuesday: Pajama Day: Wear your pajamas!

Wednesday: Life is Bright Day: Wear sunglasses and/or neon colors!

Thursday: Silly Sock Day: Wear wacky socks!

Friday: School Spirit Day: Wear B’ville gear, our school colors or bees! 

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Have a wonderful weekend! 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools



March 26, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
Happy Friday! We made it to Spring Break! I wanted to take this opportunity to share a few quick reminders for the coming weeks.
 
Some of the information below is repeated from last week because we heard from several families who did not receive my March 19th letter. We discovered that our emails were being sent directly to junk/spam folders. We contacted School Messenger and we believe the issue has been resolved. If you feel you are not receiving our emails, please check your junk/spam folder. Also all news is posted on our website.
 
Our Spring Break officially begins on Monday, March 29th. Also, since we have not used any “emergency closing” days, April 5th  (Flex Day) will be a “no school” day for all students. School break weeks are a good time for students to recharge and refuel, and they are a great opportunity for families to spend extra time together, when possible. I know many of you will be eager to travel, but I want to encourage you again to remain vigilant, use caution and stay safe.
 
When we return to instruction on Tuesday, April 6th, we will begin our transition back to five days a week for grades 3-7. As a reminder, the start dates of each of the transitions are listed below:

  • Grade 3 In-person (5 Days) -- Tuesday, April 6, 2021
  • Grade 4 and Grade 6 In-person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 12, 2021
  • Grade 5 and Grade 7 In-Person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 19, 2021

Onondaga County announced this week that barriers are not needed in the classrooms in order for students to be seated 3 feet apart. However, our decision to not bring back students in 8th-12th grade to five days a week in-person instruction was not based solely upon the use of barriers. We also have concerns with scheduling, transportation and capacity constraints. However, with this new development from the county, we are exploring all of our options. If we are able to bring secondary cohort students back to five days a week, those parents will be contacted and surveyed.
 
I wanted to also take this opportunity to give a shoutout to a few of our amazing students:

  • Spelling Bee: The following students took part in the in the oral round of The Post-Standard | Syracuse.com | WCNY Spelling Bee on Wednesday. The Bee was held virtually and we’re proud of all our spellers:
Elizabeth Pérez Mariño, 5th grade, Palmer Elementary School
Olivia Murray, 5th grade, Van Buren Elementary School
Owen Nizar, 6th grade, Ray Middle School
Nia Delardi, 8th grade, Durgee Junior High School
Miranda Barnard, 8th grade, Durgee Junior High School

Nia Delardi went 12 rounds with the winner from Auburn. Great job, Nia! Read more about the Spelling Bee HERE.
  • Swimming record: In the 100 backstroke, Freshman Eva Smith took down a 21-year-old pool record at Liverpool on Thursday, and set a new Baldwinsville school record with a time of 59.66. Congratulations, Eva and well done!
  • Durgee musical: Baldwinsville Theater Arts presents “Polkadots: The Cool Kids Musical” at 7 p.m. tonight and Saturday night. We’re so proud of our students’ hard work and dedication. Buy tickets for the online musical event HERE. Great work! 

As Spring Break begins, I truly hope everyone has a chance to rest, recharge and spend time with loved ones. I also urge everyone to continue to be safe. It is not the time to let our guards down regarding COVID-19. An uptick of cases in our District could impact our transition back to five days a week and our end of the year celebrations. Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to all health and safety protocols.
 
Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
 
Have a wonderful and safe break!

Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools


March 19, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

Happy Friday! I wanted to take this opportunity to share a few quick updates with you regarding our transition back to five days a week for grades 3-7 and our upcoming Spring Break. 

Over the past week, we have continued to prepare to welcome our Buzz and Hive cohort students back to five days a week. Our District expects to receive the physical barriers from Onondaga County in time to continue with our transition dates. As a reminder, the start dates of each of the transitions are listed below:

  • Grade 3 In-person (5 Days) -- Tuesday, April 6, 2021
  • Grade 4 and Grade 6 In-person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 12, 2021
  • Grade 5 and Grade 7 In-Person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 19, 2021

Thank you to parents and guardians who filled out our Spring 2021 Questionnaire. We’ll be using this information to coordinate transportation and prepare for our transitions back. 

Our Spring Break begins on Monday, March 29th. Also, since we have not used any “emergency closing” days, April 5th  (Flex Day) will be a “no school” day for all students. School break weeks are a good time for students to recharge and refuel, and they are a great opportunity for families to spend extra time together, when possible. I know many of you will be eager to travel, but I want to encourage you again to remain vigilant, use caution and stay safe. 

Even as COVID-19 cases continue to drop in Onondaga County, the virus is still a concern. An uptick of cases in our District could impact our transition back to five days a week and our end of the year celebrations. Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to all health and safety protocols. We want our District to continue to move in the right direction. 

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


March 16, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

On this day one year ago, I wrote to you to announce that all of our schools would close due to the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Onondaga County. Today, I write to you to announce that we will be transitioning more students back to in-person instruction five days a week. 

Beginning after Spring Break, we plan to slowly transition Hive and Buzz cohort students in grades 3-7 back to five days a week. It is important to understand this plan is contingent on receiving the required physical barriers we need through Onondaga County. We expect to receive some of them on or about April 1, 2021. 

At this time, our leadership teams have determined that the feasibility of in-person instruction five days a week for all K-12 students is not possible. We plan to slowly transition only grades 3-7 students at this time. Below are the start dates of each of the transitions. 

TRANSITION DATES:

? Grade 3 In-person (5 Days) -- Tuesday, April 6, 2021

? Grade 4 and Grade 6 In-person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 12, 2021

? Grade 5 and Grade 7 In-Person (5 Days) -- Monday, April 19, 2021

As with all plans, this is subject to change based on new information and guidance. Please understand that if the District sees an uptick in COVID-19 cases, we will work with the Onondaga County Health Department to transition back to our hybrid schedule for grades 3-7.  Again, we are hopeful this action will not be necessary, but feel we need to communicate this disclaimer for planning purposes.

It is highly likely due to scheduling, transportation, distancing, and capacity constraints we will not transition students in grades 8-12 back to in-person instruction 5 days a week before the end of the school year. We have found that the costs (challenges, disruption to student schedules, etc.) outweigh the anticipated benefits. As you know, our secondary students have been receiving significantly more in-person instruction than other local high schools. We are proud of this fact and feel maintaining our hybrid schedule at grades 8-12 is most appropriate at this time.

Spring 2021 Questionnaire:

Parents and guardians of in-person students in grades 3-7 will be asked to fill out the "Spring 2021 Questionnaire" in the Parent Portal of SchoolTool as soon as possible. The questionnaire will close on Friday, March 19. The hybrid model will no longer be an option for students in grades 3-7. Parents and guardians will have the option of selecting in-person five days a week instruction or 100 percent remote instruction for their child. Families will also be asked to make a selection on AM and PM transportation. Families are strongly encouraged to provide their own transportation of students to reduce bus density and assist with staggering entry of students into the school building. If you have any questions or issues filling out this form, please contact your child’s school. 

Our plan to transition to five days in-person instruction for students in grades 3-7 was reviewed at last night’s Board of Education meeting. Attached is the District’s report on the plan, which includes more information, and health and safety requirements for in-person learning. 

Please let us know if you have any questions and continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


March 11, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

Happy Thursday! I hope you have had a chance to enjoy the warm weather. Like most people, I am looking forward to all that comes with a transition to spring -- new beginnings!  These past few days provide us all with reassurance that warmer weather and increased daylight hours are on the way.  As we make this transition please don’t forget that Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 14 -- move your clocks ahead one hour! 

As we continue to think about transitions, I wanted to provide you with an update regarding our District’s efforts to increase in-person instruction for students in grades 3 through 12.  Our entire leadership team has been working around the clock with our transportation and facilities staff members to determine the feasibility of implementing Onondaga County’s physical distancing and barrier policy proposal.  We continue to think “outside of the box” and consider all of our options.  

At this point in time, we feel confident that we will be able to slowly begin a transition for students in our middle and elementary schools after the March/April Break.  Please understand this will only be possible if we are able to secure partitions/barriers from Onondaga County.  They have indicated to us that they expect to receive a portion of their order for all Onondaga County Schools by April 1st. I anticipate our District's transition to 5 days a week of in-person instruction will take a few weeks.  Please continue to be patient!

Elementary and Ray Middle School Transition

We plan to begin by merging our Buzz and Hive cohorts for grade 3, followed by grade 4, and grade 5 for our elementary schools.  At Ray Middle School we will begin with grade 6 and follow-up with grade 7.  As we transition each grade-level back, we will monitor and adjust as needed.  We hope to share more specifics with you next week.  As with all good plans, please anticipate changes -- if we have learned anything this past year, flexibility is key to our success!

Baker and Durgee Transition

As you can imagine, the required adjustments needed for increased in-person instruction for our secondary schools, Durgee Jr. High School and Baker High School, are significant.  At this time, there are key obstacles (a complex master schedule, large sections, class sizes, and space and staffing issues) that make it difficult for us to transition to 5 days of in-person learning at grades 8-12.  That being stated, I feel it is important to point out that our secondary students have received more in-person instruction this school year than any other high school within the region because of our Hybrid learning model.  We are very proud of that point! We will continue to exhaust all options in regard to returning all students back in-person if possible before the end of the school year. We will provide updates as they are available.      

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Have a great weekend! 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


March 5, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

Happy Friday! I hope you had a chance to read my letter that I sent out yesterday evening regarding Onondaga County’s announcement of a new policy proposal for social distance rules in schools. 

The reduction of social distancing from 6 feet to 3 feet with the use of partitions will help our district move Buzz and Hive cohort students back into our schools for in-person learning five days a week. I want to reiterate that this process will not happen overnight. Partitions have to be ordered and installed, and plans are still being worked out. Every department in our district is working around the clock to customize plans tailored to each individual classroom’s needs.

Your input is also very important to us during the process and we hope to address any concerns in the coming weeks. This process takes time and we appreciate your patience. 

Calendar reminders

Thursday, March 11 is a remote learning day for full-time grades K-2 elementary students and Hive cohort grades 3-5 elementary students ONLY for parent-teacher conferences. Those students will follow the District's remote learning day schedule, which includes asynchronous and synchronous remote learning from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. There will be a special meal pick up from 4 to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 10 at C.W. Baker High School for those students. Students will receive one breakfast and one lunch. Ray, Durgee or Baker students will have a regular school day on March 11. 

There is no school on Friday, March 12 for ALL students. District offices will be open. 

Also, Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 14. Don’t forget to move your clocks ahead one hour! 

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Have a great weekend! 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools
 


March 4, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

As you may know, Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon announced this afternoon that the county is changing social distancing rules and has released a new policy proposal for schools, which involves changing social distancing rules for schools. 

McMahon and Onondaga County Health Commissioner, Dr. Indu Gupta, announced that students can now be 3 feet apart instead of 6 feet apart in classrooms, but schools will have to install barriers or shields to separate desks. McMahon announced that the county will pay for these partitions for any district that needs them.  We are in the process of coordinating our request to Onondaga County. 

This reduction in social distancing requirements will help our district move Buzz and Hive cohort students back into our schools for in-person learning five days a week. It is anticipated that a transition back to five days a week will be gradual and staggered by grade level. Specific details, including actual feasibility, and timeline are still being worked out by our leadership team.

There are still many details to work out with transportation, scheduling and staffing. Each school building and grade level presents different challenges. Discussions and planning are ongoing. 

This change will not happen tomorrow. Partitions will need to be ordered and installed, and details will need to be fine-tuned. As we take a measured and thoughtful approach to this change, we will communicate the details with you. 

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

 Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools
 


February 26, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

The week after break always seems to feel a little bit longer, but we made it to Friday! I hope everyone gets a chance to enjoy the sunshine today, and the mild temperatures this weekend!

I want to take this opportunity to clarify and update you on communications that have been a focus of recent media reports regarding reduction of social distancing requirements. 

Late last week, Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon, shared during a press conference that NYS will allow local health departments to make a determination to reduce social distancing to 3 feet (from 6 feet) in order to get students back to in-person learning.  If this less restrictive guidance is officially adopted, our goal is to begin moving Buzz and Hive cohort students back into our schools for in-person learning five days a week. The transition back to five days a week will be gradual and staggered by grade level. Specific details are still being worked out by our leadership team.

Unfortunately, it is unknown to us when the change in social distancing will occur. We know many of you are eager to have your children return to school five days a week. Our priority has always been to provide as much in-person instruction to our students as possible.

There are still many details to work out with transportation, scheduling and staffing. Each school building and grade level presents different challenges, but we are grateful to be moving in the right direction. We will communicate the details with you as soon as possible.

I wanted to also take this opportunity to give a shout-out to our athletes. Our Winter season is wrapping up soon and I’m so proud of all of our athletes for their hard work and positive attitudes. We are looking forward to our “Fall 2” season starting up next month with football, cheerleading, girls swimming, and boys and girls volleyball. We’re also excited to reinstate several of our fine arts programs. There’s a lot of exciting things ahead. Go Bees!

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


February 19, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I hope everyone is enjoying their winter break and is taking some time to rest, recharge and refuel before we return to instruction on Monday, which is a “Hive” cohort day.

I wanted to take a moment to give you few important COVID-19 reminders:

  • If your child has been diagnosed with or exposed to COVID-19 during the break, please notify his or her school nurse.

  • If your child has traveled during the break, please notify your child’s school and follow the state’s travel and quarantine protocols. You can read more about mandatory travel quarantine on our website.

  • Due to updates from the New York State Department of Health, in-person students will be bringing home new pads of COVID-19 Health Screening Questionnaires. Please discard your current pad of forms, and switch to the new forms as soon as you receive them. 

Important calendar change for K-5 families:

The parent-teacher conference day for K-5 families scheduled for March 11, a Hive cohort day, will become a remote learning day for full-time elementary students and Hive cohort elementary students only. Those students will switch to the District’s remote learning day schedule, which includes asynchronous and synchronous remote learning from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. This change does not impact 100% remote elementary students or Buzz cohort elementary students, unless communicated by your child’s teacher. Ray, Durgee or Baker students will not be impacted by this change.

Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely, 

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools



February 12, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy winter break. I hope everyone finds time to relax and recharge. This winter break may not look the same, but the most important thing is for all us to stay safe and healthy.

There will be several athletic events and competitions over break. Fans can watch home games on the live streams on our website. The links will be posted on the homepage of our website on game day. Several other schools have also shared their live stream links with us for away games, follow us on Twitter and Facebook for details. It’s been wonderful to see our student-athletes taking part in competitions again. I’m so proud of our student-athletes for their positive attitudes during this entire process!

Our pep band and winter guard have also started practicing and Durgee Junior High School students are preparing for their musical next month. Other fine arts programs are also in the works. With every program that is reinstated for our students, we are one step closer to returning to normalcy. I know we have a ways to go, but we are moving in the right direction. And, we are doing this together!

Thank you all for your support. Have a great and safe winter break!

Go Bees!

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools
 


February 5, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

Happy Friday! I hope you had a chance to enjoy the sunshine today! 

I have a few quick announcements to share with you this afternoon: 

  • Reports cards are available now in the Parent Portal.

  • Calendar reminder:  Winter Break is February 15-19. There will be no instruction on those days. Offices will be closed on Monday, February 15 for Presidents’ Day. 

  • If you plan to travel during the break, students will need to quarantine. The District adheres to the state’s COVID-19 travel guidelines, which requires travelers to quarantine for 10 days if they have traveled internationally to a CDC Level 2 or higher COVID-19-related travel health notice country or to a state that does not border New York for more than 24 hours. New York is allowing travelers to “test out” of the mandatory 10-day quarantine. Learn more on the District’s website.

  • Reminder: The District will conduct asymptomatic COVID-19 testing on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 in all of our school buildings. The asymptomatic testing is open to all District staff and students who are scheduled to be in-person and all athletes in grades 7-12 participating in a “high risk” winter sport. (Weekly COVID-19 testing is required for all student-athletes involved in basketball, hockey and cheerleading.) Wednesday, February 10th is a Buzz cohort day. Learn more on the District’s website.

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Have a great and safe weekend! 

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools
 



January 29, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Today is the end of the second marking period, which means we made it to the halfway mark of the school year! Great work, Bees!

I have a few important updates and announcements that I want to share with you today:

High-risk and winter sports:

Governor Cuomo lifted the ban on high-risk winter sports last week pending approval from local health departments. On Thursday, we received guidance from the Onondaga County Health Department for the return of hockey, basketball, wrestling, competitive cheerleading, contact lacrosse and volleyball. Today, the Salt City Athletic Conference (SCAC) voted to move wrestling to the spring season. Section III permitted all leagues the opportunity to make such moves this year. We have been working around the clock to meet all of the protocols necessary to start winter sports on Monday, February 1st. The sports that will be allowed to play during the winter season are boys and girls basketball, ice hockey and cheerleading. These sports will start Monday pending that we meet all of the county Health Department’s requirements, including approval by our Board of Education. The school board will hold an emergency meeting at 7 a.m. on Monday to approve participation in boys and girls basketball, ice hockey and cheerleading.  In order to move forward we also need the approval of our sport-specific preparedness plans by our District’s medical director. Our medical director will be reviewing the plans and it is our hope he will approve each sport’s plan prior to the conclusion of the school day on Monday.  Parents are also required to sign a consent form to permit student athletes to participate. The form can be found HERE. 

COVID-19 return to school testing requirement:

When your child is showing a symptom(s) of COVID-19 a rapid (antigen) COVID test is fast and convenient. Immediately knowing that your child is positive is very helpful. You can begin caring for, and containing, the virus from that point forward. Unfortunately, negative rapid test results can be wrong. For this reason, when someone has symptom(s) of COVID, a confirmatory molecular (ie. PCR) test should follow. This test may take a little longer to process and your child should remain at home until both tests are returned. The goal is to decrease exposure of others to the virus. We are advised by the Onondaga County School Specialists, from the NYS Department of Health, to require a molecular COVID test result in order to return a symptomatic student to school. Please ask your provider which test is being performed (antigen or molecular) during your visit. Our "Medical Provider Clearance To Return to School” form on our COVID-19 website has been updated. 

Kindergarten registration:

Kindergarten Registration for the 2021–2022 school year is open now. This will take place virtually through the District Registrar at the District Office until February 26, 2021. Please do not go to your child’s assigned school building to register. Visit our website for more information.

Required health exam change:

Education Law requires all New York State (NYS) public school students to have a health exam when they are a new student in a school district and when they enter Pre-K or Kindergarten, and grades 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11. Beginning Sunday, schools cannot accept the health exam if it is not on the required form or the required health record equivalent. Download required form HERE.

I also want to take this opportunity to congratulate our five spellers who will advance to the oral round of The Post-Standard | Syracuse.com | WCNY Spelling Bee in March. Congratulations to Elizabeth Pérez Mariño, fifth grader at Palmer, Olivia Murray, fifth grader at Van Buren, Owen Nizar, sixth grader at Ray, Nia Delardi, eighth grader at Durgee and Miranda Barnard, eighth grader at Durgee. I also wanted to congratulate our 6 C.W. Baker High School students who recently earned Scholastic Writing Awards. See list of winners on our website. Great work, Bees!

In closing, check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Have a great and safe weekend!

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


January 22, 2021
 
Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
Happy Friday! I hope everyone is staying warm in this frigid weather!
 
As our February school break approaches and winter returns to Central New York, you may be daydreaming of some place warm and sunny. However, before you book your trip, I wanted to take a moment to remind families about the District’s expectations regarding New York State travel protocols. 
 
The District adheres to the state’s COVID-19 travel guidelines, which requires travelers to quarantine for 10 days if they have been out of state for more than 24 hours. New York is allowing travelers to “test out” of the mandatory 10-day quarantine.
 
Here’s the overview on how to “test out” using the state’s guidelines:

  • Travelers must obtain a COVID-19 test within three days of trip departure, prior to arrival back home in New York.
  • The traveler must, upon arrival in New York, quarantine for three days.
  • On day 4 after arrival home, the traveler must obtain another COVID-19 test. If both tests are negative, the traveler may exit quarantine early upon receipt of the second negative diagnostic test.
  • The NYS Traveler Health Form is available HERE.

I am sharing this information because families need to know that students must quarantine if they travel out of state during the break. Students can’t return to school until they have quarantined for 10 days or “tested out” of quarantine, using the protocol described above. As noted, the early release of quarantine (“test out”) requires completion of all steps listed above.  Failing to complete either a pre-departure return COVID-19 test from your vacation destination or after arriving home on the 4th day will result in the full 10 day quarantine. Documentation of quarantine completion must be given to your child’s school. Students will be considered absent from school if they are missing in-person instruction during their quarantine period.

We understand traveling for Winter Break or Spring Break is a family’s decision, but as a District our goal is to make sure that we are doing everything in our power to keep our students and staff safe. As COVID-19 continues to impact our community, I would encourage all of our families to consider staying local for both of our school breaks.

I also want to take this opportunity to wish our 28 spellers good luck this weekend in the regional written bee of The Post-Standard | Syracuse.com | WCNY Spelling Bee. Visit our website to see the list of spellers and learn more about the competition. I also wanted to congratulate our 17 C.W. Baker High School students who recently earned CNY Scholastic Art Awards. See list of winners on our website. Great work, Bees!
In closing, check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
 
Have a great and safe weekend!
 
Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools
 



January 15, 2021
 
Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
The Positivity Project character strength for next week is perseverance and I can’t think of a better trait to focus on as I write this letter. I wanted to take a moment to address the state of our country after last week’s unprecedented events in Washington, D.C., and the state of our community after more than 10 months of the COVID-19 health pandemic.
 
If you are having difficulty processing and understanding the events that happened on January 6, 2021 in our nation's capital, you are not alone. If you’re nervous about the potential for more dangerous demonstrations during the transition of power of our nation’s highest office, you are not alone. If you’re struggling with the isolation and fear that has come with the COVID-19 pandemic, you are not alone.
 
From the global health pandemic to political unrest in our country, we have been tested over and over again during the past year. To persevere through these challenges, we need to work together.
 
Teachers and educators are so important during these historical times because they allow students the opportunity to express themselves in a safe environment. Over the past 10 months, our teachers have held open conversations with students about COVID-19 to help calm fears, and give students the ability to express concerns and disappointments associated with the pandemic. This past week and a half, in our social studies classrooms, teachers have given students the opportunity to discuss the recent events in Washington, D.C. As educators, we strive to help students develop and foster a sense of civic readiness that will encourage them to become active and informed citizens.
 
We all have different opinions, political views and life experiences, but our goal as educators is to give students the opportunity to express themselves and the chance to listen to the perspectives of their peers. We encourage this open dialogue to continue outside of the classroom. If there is one thing I’ve learned during the past year, it’s that we have to stick together to persevere.
 
When we closed our school buildings in March 2020, we repeatedly told the community that “we are all in this together.” And together we have overcome so many obstacles! We have continued to come together as a community. We have truly taken care of each other. Personally, I was reminded of this recently by Barbara Presley, of the Baldwinsville Volunteer Center, who conveyed the center's appreciation to our students, staff, and families who assisted with this year's Christmas Bureau. Barbara told us that the food and toy drives held in our school buildings this year were the biggest they have ever had.
 
I’m so proud of our school community. We still have many challenges ahead of us and I don’t have all the solutions, but I wanted to take this opportunity to share with our families that you are not alone and we are still all in this together. We have support services available for all of our students. Please reach out to your child’s school if you have any questions.
 
I also need to share two quick calendar announcements with you from this week:

  • Reminder: Monday, January 18, 2020 is the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday. Schools and offices are closed.
  • It was brought to my attention that there is an error on our Cohort Calendar regarding Friday, January 29, 2021. The calendar features the notation D, which indicates that January 29th is a half day for students. This is an error! January 29th, a Hive cohort day, is a full day for students. The Cohort Calendar has been updated on our website. The full hard copy school (wall) calendar and the online calendar are correct.

Please let me know if you have any questions.
 
Have a great and safe long weekend!
 
Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools



January 8, 2021
 
Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
Happy Friday! It was great to see our schools buzzing with excitement this week. I visited all eight school buildings to check in with students and staff. Everyone seemed happy and grateful to be back together after the brief remote learning period and our holiday break.
 
It is our hope that we can continue to keep our doors open. I’m so proud of our community for working together to keep everyone healthy and safe. I’m also grateful for our partnership with the Onondaga County Health Department. The county has agreed to return to our schools next week to conduct another round of asymptomatic COVID-19 testing. We are working with the county now to set up more testing in the future, and we’re striving to schedule a testing day on a Buzz cohort day. As soon as we have a day set up, we’ll update you.
 
We are also pleased to announce that our school nurses and some of our other staff have become eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. We believe this is a positive step forward. We look forward to the day we can all return to school and all of our extracurricular activities can return without restrictions.
 
I have a few announcements for this week that I would like to share with you: 

  • We held our Coffee & Conversation at 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Thursday on Zoom. We discussed our SRO program, delivered a Special Education update and talked about the functions of the Human Resources Department. Watch the video presentations on our District website. If you have any questions, please reach out to any of the presenters via email. Emails can be found in our staff directory on our website.
  • Mark your calendars for the next Coffee & Conversation on Thursday, April 8, 2021 where we’ll discuss the general fund budget.
  • COVID-19 testing will take place on Monday. There are a few slots available, but most schools have already reached the maximum number of tests. Check for availability and watch a video from our first round of testing on our website. Thank you to the families and staff members who registered.

 
Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
 
Have a great and safe weekend!
Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools



January 3, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday break. We will resume in-person instruction tomorrow - Monday, January 4, 2021. It is a Hive cohort day. 

As you may be aware, positive cases of COVID-19 began to rise again this weekend in Onondaga County, which health officials are saying is the beginning of the “Christmas Surge.” Onondaga County officials and school administrators are monitoring this surge closely.

Our goal is to safely keep our school buildings open and we need your help to do so. I would like to stress the importance of notifying your child’s school if:

  • you have traveled over break
  • your family has been exposed to a case of COVID-19, including a positive case in your household
  • your child was diagnosed with COVID-19
  • your child is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 
  • you are awaiting results from a COVID-19 test for your child

In each of these circumstances, it is important that you keep your child home until all return-to-school protocols have been met. The daily health screening questionnaires completed by students and staff are essential to keeping our community healthy and our buildings safe. We rely on accurate responses to each question being thoughtful and honest each day.  When in doubt families must keep their children home from school to prevent the risk of spreading COVID-19. Our school staff will continue to be vigilant observing and reporting students displaying symptoms during the school day to our school nurses. 

Your child’s school can answer any questions you may have about when it is safe for your child to return. Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to health and safety protocols so that we can remain open for in-person instruction and minimize exposure of COVID-19.  

We share the following scenario with you based on circumstances that have happened within our District (with details changed to protect confidentiality). The person involved did not knowingly put the District at risk; there was no malice. However, by ignoring the purpose of the screening protocol a significant number of people were impacted by having to quarantine due to exposure.

SCENARIO: Sally (elementary student) and Jimmy (middle school student) are siblings. Both had brief cold symptoms over a long weekend and were tested. By Monday all of the symptoms had improved. Both children’s screening questionnaires indicated “No” to the questions of having had recent symptoms or having been tested. The family attended school for three days before the positive COVID test results were returned unwittingly exposing their teachers, school staff and fellow students to COVID resulting in 93 quarantines. Use the daily screening questionnaire as a means to keep COVID out of our schools.  In this case, the children were attending schools while they were infectious, which includes the two days prior to symptoms developing and all of the days that followed.  The longer it takes to isolate positive cases the more the virus can spread. 

We have updated the Frequently Asked Questions on our COVID-19 website with more scenarios and updated information on quarantines and protocols. Learn more HERE. We would also like to share that the District will partner again with Onondaga County to host proactive asymptomatic testing of students and staff in all buildings on Monday, January 11, 2021. Please be on the lookout for registration information this week.

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday. Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools



December 30, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday break and I wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy New Year. 

This school break is an important time for all of us to recharge and refuel before we return to instruction next week. As of today, our plan is to return to in-person instruction on Monday, January 4, which is a Hive cohort day. 

I also wanted to take a moment to give you two important COVID-19 reminders:

  • If your child has been diagnosed with COVID-19 during the break, please notify his or her school nurse. Leave a voicemail, if necessary. Nurses are checking their messages. 

  • If your child has traveled during the break, please notify your child’s school and follow the state’s travel and quarantine protocols. 

Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to health and safety protocols so that we can safely reopen for in-person instruction on Monday, and minimize exposure of COVID-19.

Have a great holiday weekend and we’ll see you soon!

Continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. You can expect an email update from us on Sunday. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely, 

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools
 


December 18, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,
 
Another Friday is here and I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy. As you know, next week all of our school buildings will switch to full remote instruction for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday before our holiday break starts on Thursday. In preparation, I wanted to share a few quick reminders:

  • Families are asked to continue to report absences to their child's school. Families should also continue to report positive COVID-19 cases, test results (positive or negative), symptoms, potential exposures, quarantines, and travel to their child’s school during remote learning and during the holiday break.
  • Families traveling during the holiday season, should follow the state’s travel guidelines for testing and quarantines. Read more HERE.
  • Families should continue to follow the Onondaga County Health Department’s isolation and quarantine guidelines if anyone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19 or if your family has been notified of an exposure to a positive individual, which can be found HERE.

Our goal is to return to our hybrid learning schedule on January 4 after holiday break. In order to do so, we all need to work together. Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to health and safety protocols so that we can safely reopen for in-person instruction and minimize exposure of COVID-19.
 
I wanted to take this opportunity to mention some good news from our school buildings. I’m incredibly proud of our students and staff for helping to spread cheer in our community and beyond. In every school, students and staff have collected items to help those in need. From donating gift cards for families to buy presents at Van Buren to collecting hats and mittens at Palmer, every building has made a difference in our community this holiday season. Check out our Facebook page to see photos and more.
 
I also want to encourage you to check out NewsChannel 9 this evening. C.W. Baker High School’s Technology Teacher Mr. Cuyler and his students are expected to be featured during the 6 p.m. news. The class made foldable desks for students to use at home after hearing that some remote learners didn’t have a suitable place to learn at home. Great work, Bees!
 
As we approach the end of 2020, it is my hope that we can safely return to some of the things that we love in 2021. Last year at this time our Marching Bees were preparing to head to California to perform in the Rose Parade. Although things are much different right now, we know we have exciting things to look forward to in our future, and we’re grateful to be able to look back at all that we’ve accomplished. Check out this video from the Baldwinsville Marching Band program, which was produced by Baker senior Tristan Hall.
 
Have a great weekend!
 
Please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage.  Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools


December 16, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

Onondaga County officials conducted asymptomatic COVID-19 testing in all eight of our school buildings today. Officials tested 738 students and staff members. There was one positive staff member at McNamara Elementary School and one positive student at C.W. Baker High School. We are grateful for the county for offering testing today. 

The number of positive asymptomatic cases found in our schools was low today, but symptomatic cases of COVID-19 continue to be on the rise in our community. We have been carefully assessing how this rise is impacting our students and staff and we have made the determination that all Baldwinsville school buildings will switch to remote instruction on Monday, December 21. 

The active number of COVID-19 cases in Central New York has continued to grow. We have been fortunate this school year because we have not needed to disrupt in-person learning by repeatedly closing down entire schools due to positive cases. The Durgee Jr. High School closure during the beginning of the school year was the only time we needed to close a building due to a staffing shortage. 

However, the number of positive cases continue to rise in our District and with those cases comes an increase in mandatory quarantines and staffing shortages in all our school buildings and departments. Again as a result, we have determined that it is in the best interest of our students and staff to switch to remote instruction for Monday (12/21), Tuesday (12/22) and Wednesday (12/23) of next week. Our holiday break begins on Thursday, December 24. 

We anticipate resuming our in-person instruction after our holiday break on Monday, January 4, 2021. Should information change, we will notify families.

Students who attend full-time programs outside of the Baldwinsville Central School District will be transported to their programs through Wednesday (12/23) as long as those programs remain open for in-person learning. Students who attend half day BOCES programs will be transported from Baker High School to BOCES. Students needing transportation to Baker High School to catch the CTE bus should contact the transportation office at 315-638-6097.

We hope the decision announced today provides families with time to make arrangements for child care for next week, as necessary. 

Our Food Service Department will be providing meals for all students. Families can pick up meals - 3 breakfast/3 lunch - for all enrolled students from 12 to 1 p.m. and 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Monday, December 21 at the front entrance of C.W. Baker High School. Meals are free for all students. If you need delivery, please call 315-638-6064 by 2 p.m. Friday, December 18.

As the District continues to take precautions to protect the health and safety of our students, staff, and families, please continue to check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage.  Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri

Acting Superintendent of Schools
 



December 11, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We’ve reached another Friday and I hope everyone is staying warm and healthy. I wanted to share a few quick announcements with you from this week:

  • The District met its yellow micro-cluster zone requirements last month when asymptomatic testing was held at C.W. Baker High School, Durgee Junior High School, Palmer Elementary School and Elden Elementary School. Although no further testing is required to remain open to in-person instruction, the Onondaga County Health Department has offered to return next week to conduct testing in all of our school buildings. The asymptomatic testing will be held on Wednesday, December 16 and is open to District staff and students who are scheduled to be in-person. Wednesday is a Hive cohort day. We will not test a student without consent from their parent or guardian. Families who give consent for their child to be tested are asked to register online. Registration is now open. See below for instructions on how to register and watch a video on the testing process HERE.
  • We want to remind families that if an emergency occurs after school hours or on weekends, please call 911 first. Messages to school staff, counselors, administrators or to a school resources officer on nights and weekends may not be received in a timely manner. If you need to report an emergency concerning your child or regarding another Baldwinsville student, please call 911. Officers will coordinate with school officials if more information or collaboration is needed. 
  • The New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced today that the 2021 Winter State Championships will be canceled this year and high-risk sports are postponed until authorization is granted by state officials. High-risk sports include basketball, wrestling, ice hockey, competitive cheerleading, football, boys lacrosse and volleyball. The decision to postpone was reinforced by the increase in infection and hospitalization rates across the State.
  • COVID-19 cases in our community remain one of our top concerns and we want to remind families to keep your child home if he or she is feeling sick or if he or she has been exposed to someone who is sick. Your child’s teacher and principal will work with your family to make sure learning continues at home. We all have to work together to keep our staff and students safe!
How to register for COVID-19 testing:
  • Click this link (https://covid19.ongov.net/appointments/school-registration-form/).
  • Fill out the registration form. Enter your information. Under the patient’s name, enter your child’s name. Under phone and email, enter your contact information.
  • Enter your child’s information: Date of birth, sex, etc.
  • The form will ask you to enter the “Name of School.” In this spot, enter the address and phone number for your school:
    • Charles W. Baker High School - 29 E Oneida St, Baldwinsville, NY 13027 (315)-638-6000
    • Theodore R. Durgee Junior High School - 29 E Oneida St, Baldwinsville, NY 13027 (315)-638-6086
    • Ray Middle School - 7650 Van Buren Road, Baldwinsville, NY 13027 (315) 638-6106
    • Harry E. Elden Elementary School - 29 E Oneida St, Baldwinsville, NY 13027 (315) 638-6118
    • McNamara Elementary School - 7344 O’Brien Road, Baldwinsville, NY 13027 (315) 638-6130
    • L. Pearl Palmer Elementary School - 7864 Hicks Road, Baldwinsville NY 13027 (315) 638-6127
    • Reynolds Elementary School - 222 Deerwood Drive, Baldwinsville NY 13027 (315) 638-6124
    • Van Buren Elementary School - 20 Ford Street, Baldwinsville NY 13027 (315) 638-6121
  • Parents will be asked to type in their name to give consent.
  • Select continue.
  • Select your school as the testing location.
  • Choose an appointment time. The appointment time is only used to hold a test for the student or staff member. Testing is quick and will occur much faster than listed through the appointment times.

Registration will close as soon as we have reached the maximum number of tests. Registration is only open to students who attend school in-person. Since this testing is taking place on Wednesday, December 16, only Hive students, students who attend everyday, and staff may register. If your child won’t be in school on Wednesday, December 16, please do not register your child. This is asymptomatic testing. Participants may only register if they have no symptoms and have not tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days.

The test kits that Onondaga County will be using are minimally-invasive, nasal swab rapid tests, which produce results in 15 minutes. The swab is placed in the lower part of the nose. The BinaxNOW test is much less invasive than the deep nasopharyngeal swabs performed at many medical facilities. The method for this particular test is to gently insert the swab into the lower part of each nostril (just half to one inch), swirl and repeat in the second nostril.

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Have a great weekend!
Sincerely,
 
Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Acting Superintendent of Schools



December 4, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We made it to another weekend! Happy first Friday of December! I wanted to share a few quick announcements with you from this week:

  • Our December Hive community newsletter was sent to the printers today. It will be arriving in your mailbox in a few weeks, but you can view it now -- in full color -- on our website by clicking here.
  • In the Hive, we announced some exciting news: The District will provide free meals to all enrolled students for the remainder of the school year. Check out the story for more information.
  • Our Holiday Greeting Card Contest concluded last week. Ayden Weston, a fourth grader at Reynolds Elementary School was crowned the winner. All the entries were amazing! Check them out on our website.
  • Join us for a free screening of the documentary, “The Upstanders” on Thursday, December 10 at 4 p.m. followed by a panel discussion. This webinar is brought to you by the District Mental Wellness Committee. "The Upstanders" is a film-based education program about resilience, attention, and the power of connection to end bullying. Learn more and register on our website.
  • We are all aware that the numbers of COVID-19 cases are rising across the region, data monitored by the Onondaga County Health Department highlights that the spread of COVID-19, fortunately, is not occurring in our schools. In order to keep our schools open to in-person instruction, we need your help! Please keep your child home if he or she is feeling sick. Please notify your school if your child travels out of state or is exposed to COVID-19. We all have to work together to keep our staff and students safe!
  • As the weather begins to change resulting in more snow, wind chill rates well below safe temperatures, and unsafe driving conditions, I want to remind you that the District will likely adjust emergency closing days to full remote instruction/learning days. Please watch for announcements and help prepare students to switch to remote instruction. Certainly, the District is reserving the option of using an actual emergency closing day if circumstances warrant the need.

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates and more. Remember you can find our COVID-19 cases dashboard on our homepage. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Have a great weekend!

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 29, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I hope everyone enjoyed the long holiday weekend. As your family prepares to return to work and school this week, I wanted to alert you to a change in the way we will announce COVID-19 cases in our District moving forward.

When we have a positive case in our District, our team immediately starts to work with the Onondaga County Health Department to investigate and help with contact tracing. We provide the health department with data, such as attendance records, schedules, bus routes and more. The health department uses that information to determine quarantines. Since September, our principals and staff members have been notifying impacted families before the health department makes contact. This means you will hear from us directly if your family is impacted by a positive case of COVID-19 in our District. 

The letters that we email to the entire District are distributed to you in an effort to keep the whole District informed. We strive to always be open and transparent. However, we do realize that many of you are being overwhelmed by emails from us and your child’s teachers and principal. In an effort to reduce the number of emails you receive, we will no longer be sending individual messages when there is a positive case of COVID-19 in our District. Instead, we will post active cases to a dashboard on our District website. The chart will identify the date the positive case was confirmed, the impacted building or school, the date the student or staff member was last in attendance and details related to quarantines. We’ve added cases since November 23rd so that you can see how it works. Check it out here

If your child is directly impacted and needs to quarantine, you will hear from us. If a school building or multiple schools are closed to in-person instruction, you will hear from us. All major announcements will be posted on our website, social media pages and sent out via School Messenger with phone calls and emails. Our goal is to keep you informed, not to inundate you with emails. 

As we begin a new week, I would like to stress the importance of notifying your child’s school if you have recently traveled, if your family has been exposed to a case of COVID-19 outside of school, or if your child is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. In each of these circumstances, it is important that you keep your child home until all return-to-school protocols have been met. Your child’s school can answer any questions you may have about when it is safe for your child to return.  Please respect all of our students and staff by adhering to health and safety protocols so that we can remain open for in-person instruction and minimize exposure of COVID-19.  

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday. I hope everyone was able to safely connect with their loved ones. We appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us.

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 27, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

We were notified that we have multiple positive cases of COVID-19 in our District. The new cases involve one student at C.W. Baker High School, one student at Durgee Junior High School, and one student at Ray Middle School.

The impacted student from Baker High School was last in attendance on November 18th. The Onondaga County Health Department will be contacting the 45 students and 9 staff members who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 2nd, with a return to school on December 7th as scheduled for the Hive cohort. 

The impacted student from Durgee Junior High School was last in attendance on November 18th. The Onondaga County Health Department will be contacting the 10 students who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 2nd, with a return to school on December 7th as scheduled for the Hive cohort. 

The impacted student from Ray Middle School was last in attendance on November 19th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 23 students and 5 staff who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 3rd, with a return to school on December 4th as scheduled for the Buzz cohort.

As you know, we cannot provide any additional information about these cases due to confidentiality and privacy constraints. At this time, the District has determined that there is no need to cancel in-person instruction at the impacted schools. The District’s custodial staff will continue its regular deep cleaning and sanitizing practices in our buildings and on our school buses.

Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that families please keep an eye out for signs and symptoms as it takes 7 to 8 days after exposure. The District is taking precautions to protect the health and safety of its students and employees. We will continue to closely monitor this situation and communicate updates, if necessary.

As always, we appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us.

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 25, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

We were notified that we have multiple positive cases of COVID-19 in our District. The new cases involve two students at Van Buren Elementary School, one student at Durgee Junior High School, one student at C.W. Baker High School, and one Facilities Department staff member. 

The Onondaga County Health Department determined that there are no required quarantines due to in-school exposure in the following cases:

  • One student at Baker High School last in attendance on November 18th

The county Health Department determined that there are required quarantines in the following cases:

  • One of the impacted students at Van Buren Elementary School was last in attendance on November 20th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 13 students and 1 staff member who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 4th, with a return to school on December 7th as scheduled.  

  • The second impacted student at Van Buren Elementary School was last in attendance on November 23rd. The county Health Department will be contacting the 21 students and 5 staff who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 7th, with a return to school on December 8th as scheduled.  

  • The impacted student from Durgee Junior High School was last in attendance on November 18th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 36 students who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 2nd, with a return to school on December 7th as scheduled for the Hive cohort.  

  • The impacted Facilities Department staff member was last in attendance on November 13th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 5 staff who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on November 27th.

As you know, we cannot provide any additional information about these cases due to confidentiality and privacy constraints. At this time, the District has determined that there is no need to cancel in-person instruction at the impacted schools. The District’s custodial staff will continue its regular deep cleaning and sanitizing practices in our buildings and on our school buses.

Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that families please keep an eye out for signs and symptoms as it takes 7 to 8 days after exposure. The District is taking precautions to protect the health and safety of its students and employees. We will continue to closely monitor this situation and communicate updates, if necessary.

As always, we appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us.

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 24, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

We were notified that we have multiple positive cases of COVID-19 in our District. The new cases involve two students and one teacher at C.W. Baker High School, one student at Palmer Elementary School, one remote learner at Van Buren Elementary School, and one Transportation Department staff member. 

The Onondaga County Health Department determined that there are no required quarantines due to in-school exposure in the following cases:

  • One student at Baker High School last in attendance on November 4th

  • One teacher at Baker High School last in attendance on November 10th

  • One remote learner at Van Buren Elementary School

The county Health Department determined that there are required quarantines in the following cases:

  • The impacted student at Baker High School was last in attendance on November 18th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 62 students and 6 staff who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 2nd, with a return to school on December 7th as scheduled for the Hive cohort.  

  • The impacted student at Palmer Elementary was last in attendance on November 12th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 13 students and 1 staff member who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on November 26th, with a return to school on November 30th.   

  • The impacted Transportation Department staff member was last in attendance on November 17th. The county Health Department will be contacting the 24 students who are required to quarantine. The quarantine is expected to end on December 1st, with a return to school on December 2nd for students who attend school everyday, and a return to school on December 7th as scheduled for the Hive cohort.

As you know, we cannot provide any additional information about these cases due to confidentiality and privacy constraints. At this time, the District has determined that there is no need to cancel in-person instruction at the impacted schools. The District’s custodial staff will continue its regular deep cleaning and sanitizing practices in our buildings and on our school buses.

Out of an abundance of caution, we ask that families please keep an eye out for signs and symptoms as it takes 7 to 8 days after exposure. The District is taking precautions to protect the health and safety of its students and employees. We will continue to closely monitor this situation and communicate updates, if necessary.

As always, we appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us.

Sincerely, 

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 24, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

It is hard to believe that our fall season is coming to a close and the Thanksgiving holiday is only two days away.  For many of us it is tradition to take time this week to reflect upon what we are thankful for with our family and friends. We all know that 2020 has been a challenging year and unfortunately those challenges are growing as we enter the holiday season. Many of us will not be able to be with our family and friends this year for a variety of reasons, but I believe it is still important to share with others the reasons why we are thankful, even if this exchange is virtual this year! 

Personally, I am thankful for all of the sacrifices our healthcare workers and first responders have made during this time to assist all of those in need.  I’m also extremely grateful that our District has been able to keep our schools open for in-person instruction. This has been no small feat. We are able to keep our buildings open because of our devoted staff and students.  From the dedication of our transportation department staff to the determination of our custodial workers, everyone has worked together to achieve our goal of safely keeping our buildings open. I’m so grateful to the commitment of our students and staff to maintain social distancing, wear face coverings, and implement hygiene practices conducive to maintaining health and preventing disease, especially through cleanliness.  Everyone has sacrificed something for the benefit of the common good!  That being said, it is clear that we all need to continue to make sacrifices over this short holiday break so that we can reduce the spread of COVID-19 and remain open for in-person instruction.

We know how important it is for our students to experience as much normalcy as possible - at home and at school. But in order to continue the normalcy of attending in-person classes, participating in extracurricular activities and playing sports, we have to continue to make safe decisions at home. We may have to modify our holiday plans this year so that we can keep our friends and family healthy. Please remember we are all still in this together, and together we can keep our schools open and our community safe.    

So, as my family celebrates the Thanksgiving holiday, in a very different way through Facetime, GoogleMeet, and Zoom, I’ll be sharing what I’m grateful for and I’m grateful for all of you!

On behalf of the Baldwinsville Central School District Board of Education, building and District leadership, as well as instructional and non-instructional staff members, we would like to say “Thank you!”  We are grateful for your continued support.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Sincerely,

Joseph M. DeBarbieri, Acting Superintendent of Schools


November 13, 2020
 
Dear parents and guardians,
 
Since the governor announced on Monday that our District was part of the yellow micro-cluster zone, we have been working to navigate the testing protocols required in order to keep our school buildings open to in-person instruction. Testing will begin next week.
 
We are pleased to announce that with the help of our school nurses, Onondaga County will be able to conduct COVID-19 testing at all four of our schools that fall within the yellow zone. Students and staff at Palmer Elementary School and Elden Elementary School will be tested on Wednesday, November 18th and testing will be held at Durgee Junior High School and C.W. Baker High School on Friday, November 20th.
 
We will not test a student without consent from their parent or guardian. Families will give consent by registering online prior to the day of testing. Once the registration link is available, we will send it out to Palmer, Elden, Baker, and Durgee families and staff. Registration will close as soon as we have reached the required number of tests. We are required to test 20 percent of the in-person population at each school, which is about 550 people each week.
 
I want to remind families that we’ve put together a list of frequently asked questions, which will be updated as more information becomes available. The FAQ document can be found on our District website.
 
We appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out.
 
Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools


November 12, 2020

UPDATE: We wanted to share an update with our families regarding testing at Durgee Junior High School and C.W. Baker High School. We heard from Onondaga County officials this evening and with help from our nursing staff, the county will be able to conduct COVID-19 testing at both of these schools next week. We’ll send a formal update to our families tomorrow.
 
Dear parents and guardians,
 
I’m writing today to give you an update on the District’s yellow micro-cluster zone designation. We are working closely with Onondaga County to navigate the testing protocols required in order to remain open to in-person learning while our school buildings are in the yellow zone.
 
I would like to thank parents and guardians for taking part in our testing survey. Out of the families that responded to the survey who have students attending school in-person, 74 percent indicated that they will give consent for their child to be tested in school for COVID-19.
 
After reviewing the survey results and information received from Onondaga County officials, we have decided to move forward with testing in our schools. The District has been informed that priority will be given to schools with elementary-aged students. This is due to the number of test kits available and the number of county medical personnel available to administer the test. For us, this means testing will begin at Elden Elementary School and Palmer Elementary School next week.
 
Due to this, the county has stated that testing will not be available for Durgee Junior High School or C.W. Baker High School at this time. In-person learning will continue at those two buildings until further notice. However, without being able to meet the testing requirements next week it is possible that both schools will need to move to remote learning beginning Monday, November 23. Please know we are working with Onondaga County and our school nurses to determine the feasibility of assisting the county so that our secondary schools can test students to remain open.  Although no decision has been made, we want families to prepare for the possibility of temporarily switching to remote learning if we are unsuccessful with testing our secondary students.
 
Registration links and schedules for testing at Elden Elementary and Palmer Elementary will be released as soon as they become available. In the meantime, we’ve put together a list of frequently asked questions, which will be updated as more information becomes available. The FAQ document can be found on our District website.
 
We appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out.
 
Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 



November 11, 2020
 
Dear parents and guardians,
 
I’m writing today to give you an update on the District’s yellow zone designation. On Monday, November 9, Governor Andrew Cuomo identified zip code 13027 in Baldwinsville as being part of the micro-cluster in Onondaga County that is seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases. All eight of our school buildings are located within the zip code 13027.
 
We have received clarification that only four of our school buildings are located in the yellow micro-cluster zone, not the entire 13027 zip code in which all District schools are located. After further review and with additional guidance from Onondaga County, we have learned that the buildings in the yellow zone are only those located in the town of Lysander.
 
The four buildings located in the town of Lysander are C.W. Baker High School, Durgee Junior High School, Elden Elementary School and Palmer Elementary School. Since these four school buildings fall within the yellow micro-cluster zone, the District must test 20 percent of the in-person population at each school, each week, until we are out of the yellow zone. This is roughly 550 tests per week.
 
We are continuing to work closely with Onondaga County officials to explore what testing will look like for our District. Our survey to parents and guardians will be open until 11:59 p.m. tonight through the SchoolTool Parent Portal. It’s important for all parents to respond to the survey even if your child’s school no longer falls in the yellow zone. We hope to update you again on Thursday as more information becomes available.
 
We appreciate your support and understanding on this matter. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



November 6, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

In effort to not overwhelm you with multiple emails, I’m writing to you today to inform you about two new COVID-19 cases and to provide you with a few announcements from this week.

The Onondaga County Health Department confirmed today we have two new cases of COVID-19 in our District. A staff member at McNamara Elementary School tested positive for the virus. District officials in conjunction with the county Health Department immediately began its investigations, which is ongoing. The staff member was last in attendance on Tuesday, November 3 and is now in isolation. Contract tracing by the Onondaga County Health Department has determined that no students or staff members will need to quarantine at this time.

The second case involves a 100% remote student who attends Palmer Elementary School.  Since the student is a remote learner and was not in attendance at the school this school year, there is no need for students or staff to quarantine based on school exposure. The remote learner is in isolation. 

We can’t provide any additional information about this student or staff member due to confidentiality and privacy constraints. We appreciate your support and understanding when we have a positive COVID-19 case in one of our buildings. As local health experts have said, this virus is not spreading within schools due to our mask requirements, social distancing protocols, and cleaning and disinfecting procedures. However, Onondaga County is currently facing its highest number of positive cases. It is important that we all continue to take precautions to protect ourselves and each other from COVID-19. Please remember to wear a mask in public and practice social distancing. Each person in our community must do their part to keep everyone safe.

Before I share with you updates from this week, I wanted to take this opportunity to remind our families and community members to drive safely and take precautions in our school zones. Please reduce speed in our school zones, watch out for pedestrians and do not pass stopped vehicles, especially during drop-off and pick-up at all of our schools. Be sure to pay attention. If you stay alert and focused, you can keep yourself and everyone around you safe.

I just have a few quick updates and announcements that I would like to share with you from this week:

  • The Board of Education is seeking applicants for the vacant seat on the school board. Residents wishing to serve on the board are invited to submit a letter of interest and resume by November 18. Learn more on our website.
  • Calendar reminder for next week: There is no school on Wednesday for Veterans Day. District Offices will also be closed.
  • The Marking Period ends Friday, November 13. Report cards will be available in the Parent Portal beginning Friday, November 20.
  • There’s been a change to our meal pickup for remote students. Meals will be available for pickup at Baker High School only. Pickup will no longer be available at Ray Middle School.
  • The New York State Education Department announced this week that Regents exams scheduled for January are canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. No decision has been made about the June and August Regents exams.
  • Section III Athletics announced this week that the 2020-2021 indoor track and field season will be postponed. Other winter sports are expected to start on December 14, however we are waiting for more guidance from the New York State Public High School Athletic Association and the governor’s office about the status of those sports that are considered “higher risk.”
  • The holiday season is approaching and we’re excited to announce a holiday greeting card design contest. The contest will be open to all elementary school students and details will be announced on Monday.

Enjoy the beautiful weather and I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 



October 30, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

As October comes to an end, I want to send out another thank you to our families and staff! I’m so grateful for the support, hard work and positivity that has helped to keep our District moving forward.

I have a few announcements and reminders to share with you this week:

  • Our District continues to work with the Onondaga County Health Department and follow state guidance when we have a positive COVID-19 case in one of our schools. Fortunately, we’ve been able to keep our school buildings open for the majority of our cases. Last month, we suspended in-person classes at Durgee Junior High School for a short period of time due to the number of staff members who were quarantined by the county Health Department. If we need to close a building again or if in-person instruction is suspended by state or local officials, we want to make sure our families are prepared for remote learning. We put together a one-page Q&A document and remote learning checklist to help families. Click here to view.
  • Our Student COVID-19 Health Screening Questionnaire is now available on our website in four languages: English, Spanish, Russian and Ukrainian. Click here to view.
  • We held our first Coffee and Conversation of the school year on Thursday. If you missed it, watch the video on our website.
  • The New York State Education Department (NYSED) has developed a Parent Dashboard to increase transparency and make information about school performance and other school-level data easier for parents and the public to access. The Parent Dashboard offers information on all public schools. NYSED invites all community stakeholders to explore the Parent Dashboard and provide feedback via an online survey. NYSED will use this feedback to identify the data most useful to parents and the public to make ongoing improvements to the website.
  • Reminder: Set your clocks back one hour this weekend. Daylight Savings Time ends at 2 a.m. on Sunday.

I hope everyone has a wonderful, safe weekend!

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 



October 23, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

It’s a beautiful day and I hope everyone can get outside and enjoy it!

I just have a two reminders to announce today:

The Parent-Teacher Conference Days for K-5 families scheduled for next week have been changed to remote learning days for all elementary students. All K-5 students will receive a full day of remote learning on October 29th and 30th.

Our first Coffee & Conversation of the year will be held on Thursday, October 29th at 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. via Zoom. The Zoom links are posted on the District’s website.

This meeting will include the following District employees: 

  • Superintendent Matthew McDonald
  • Deputy Superintendent Joseph DeBarbieri
  • Director of Elementary Curriculum & Instruction (K-6) Tony Cardamone
  • Director of Secondary Curriculum & Instruction (7-12) Renee Burnett
  • Director of Academic Services and Accountability Danielle Nahorney 
  • Director of Instructional Technology Richard "RJ" DeLisle
  • Director of Athletics, PE & Health Christopher Campolieta
Topics for this meeting include: 
  • Purpose/Expectations of Q&A
  • Opening of New School Year
  • Deputy Superintendent & K-12 Curriculum and Instruction
  • Technology
  • Athletics 

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Sincerely,
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



October 16, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

We have made it to another weekend! Happy Friday!

I wanted to share a few quick announcements from this week:

  • We have started the development process for the 2021-2022 budget and we are seeking community input through budget advisory committees. The District is looking for volunteers to serve on committees to review specific areas of the budget – Facilities, Athletics, Transportation, Special Education and Instructional/Technology. Volunteers will provide input on the budget cost savings prior to the budget components being presented to the Board of Education for review. Read more about the committees and how to join on our website.
  • Our Food Service Department would like to remind families that breakfast and lunch is currently free for all students. The department has been working hard to expand its hot food offering in all of our schools, and is excited to announce that Durgee Junior High School has reopened their cafeteria lines, which allows students to visit the cafeteria to select their own meals. 
  • This week I met with the presidents of our Parent Teacher Associations and I'm excited to report that they are moving forward with plans for taking school pictures. We are hopeful that our PTAs can also safely restore some of their student-centered activities during the coming months!
  • Our fall athletic season is in full swing and we’ve been recognizing our senior athletes during their home games. Check out our social media pages for photos and more. #GoBees

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Sincerely,
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 



October 9, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Happy Friday! There's no school for students today or Monday. I hope you all enjoy the four-day weekend.
Please visit our website for more information on the positive COVID-19 case at C.W. Baker High School. We will continue to closely monitor this situation and communicate updates, if necessary.

I wanted to take a moment to share with you a few announcements from this week.

At the Board of Education meeting on Monday night, I had the honor to recognize the retirement of my colleague and friend, Jamie Rodems. Jamie retired recently from the District after serving 11 years as the assistant superintendent of management services. Jamie was instrumental with securing voter approval on numerous capital projects that have positively impacted our students and helped the District save money. We are grateful for Jamie’s dedication to the community and his fiduciary responsibilities. Jamie will be greatly missed. We wish him a wonderful retirement.

I would also like to extend a warm welcome to Debra Miller, who will serve as interim assistant superintendent of management services. Debra, a Baldwinsville community member, comes to us with more than 30 years of school experience.

C.W. Baker High School announced the Class of 2021 Baker’s Dozen this week. Congratulations to Calista Winders, Geoffrey Tse, Andrew Panos, Bianca Gascon, Aidan Micho, Nathaniel Hahn, Jack McManus, Lindsey Demer, Colin DeLaney, Kyle Rogers, Tristan Miranda, Tiffany Natoli and Jenna Boutilier. I am so proud of you! Keep working hard to achieve your goals!

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Have a wonderful long weekend!

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



October 2, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Happy October! I want to take time on this beautiful fall Friday to thank our staff for their hard work and dedication in the reopening of our District buildings and the wonderful start to the 2020-21 school year.

Through every challenge, our staff has risen to the occasion with positivity and professionalism. I’m very proud. Take a look for yourself by viewing the Virtual Curriculum Night and Virtual Open House videos listed below. It’s amazing how our staff has been able to adapt and evolve during this unprecedented year in education!

Please note, Durgee Junior High School’s Curriculum Night videos are delayed due to the recent closure, and will be available later this month. Stay tuned!

C.W. Baker High School
Ray Middle School
Elden Elementary School
McNamara Elementary School
Palmer Elementary School
Reynolds Elementary School
Van Buren Elementary School

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Have a great weekend! Go Bees!

Sincerely,
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



September 25, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Happy Friday. It’s looking like a beautiful summer weekend for our first weekend of fall. I hope you’re able to enjoy it with your families.
I’m pleased to announce that our Food Service Department is making sure all students have access to free, healthy meals while the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create challenges for many families. All enrolled students are eligible for a free breakfast and lunch meal every school day, regardless of family income.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has extended flexibilities it granted to school meal programs to provide free breakfast and lunch for all children 18 and younger – whether learning in-person or remote – through Dec. 31 or until funding is exhausted. Effective Monday, meals will be free for all B’ville students on the days they are receiving in-person instruction. Learn more on our website.

I have a few other updates that I would like to share with you this week:

  • Our Van Buren Elementary School students and teacher returned to their classroom this week after being quarantined by the Onondaga County Health Department. Principal Cronin said the students were excited to return to the school and get back into their in-person learning routine.
  • Durgee Junior High School will reopen on Monday after being closed since Friday, Sept. 18 due to two positive COVID-19 cases. We anticipate welcoming back all students, including the 71 students and 10 teachers who were asked to quarantine as a precaution, on Monday. However, we are still waiting to hear back from the county Health Department regarding the protocol for their return. We will update the community as soon as information becomes available.
  • We are not aware of any additional cases that resulted from the exposure at Van Buren and Durgee, which implies our measures to keep our students and staff protected are working. Keep up the good work!
  • If your child is sent home with COVID-19 symptoms, you will be sent home with a form, which can also be found on our website, for your medical provider. In order for a student to return to school, he or she must follow the New York State Department of Health (which the District is following) protocol, which includes documentation from a health care provider following evaluation, a negative COVID-19 test result AND a resolution of symptoms.
  • If your child tests positive for COVID10, please contact the District so that we can immediately coordinate our efforts with the county.  Please provide the school nurse with a copy of any official quarantine or isolation order.
  • Onondaga County has set up a testing site at NBT Bank Stadium in Syracuse that is open for symptomatic students and school district employees. Registration is required by emailing CovidTesting@upstate.edu or by calling 315-464-2582 and selecting option #4.
  • Our School Nurse Supervisor Julie Carpenter also wants to encourage our students and staff members to get a flu shot this year.
  • I would like to remind families that face coverings are required at our school bus stops. Families waiting with students should also be wearing a face covering. Thank you for helping us keep our community safe.
  • Our fall athletes started practice this week. You can feel the excitement from the athletes and their coaches. It’s so great to have our fields, courts and stadium back in use!

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Have a great weekend!

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools



September 11, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

I’m so proud our students, families and staff for a successful start of the 2020-2021 school year. Despite all the changes and new safety protocols, I saw so much positivity spreading through our classrooms.

The Buzz and full-time students are quickly adjusting to our new health and safety practices and settling right back into the classroom routines.  Also, I’ve heard great things from the teachers and families of our remote learners.  I hope you have tuned into my video updates each day.  They are posted on our Facebook page and website.  Today’s update will focus on remote learners.

On Monday, we will welcome our Hive students to their first day of school.  I can’t wait!

I want to also take a moment to address the media reports involving a photo circulating on social media of our Baker High School seniors.  I know as a District we can't control how students behave outside of school, but we hope that they will make better choices.  My goal is to keep our students safe and keep them in school.  The administration at Baker High School is addressing our concerns about this type of behavior with students and families.  The District will continue to educate all its students on safe choices and the impact their actions have on their own well-being and the safety of others. We have to work together.
I wanted to remind our families to obey the speed limit, which is 15 mph, on our main campus and at all of our school buildings.  Help us keep our students safe.
We are also excited to share that Section III Athletics announced today that low and moderate risk fall sports will begin with practices on Monday, September 21, 2020.  Their decision to move forward with fall athletics allows our B’ville Bees student-athletes to take part in opportunities for competitions this fall.  We are excited we can provide more normalcy to our student-athletes during these unique times.  I'm also excited to report that Football, Boys and Girls Volleyball, and Cheerleading will have a season starting March 1st.

There’s more positive news related to the performing arts. I met with area superintendents regarding a revised marching band season for this fall. I am meeting with the superintendents again on Monday and with Band Director Casey Vanderstouw about what the B’ville program will look like during the 2020-2021 school year. More information to come next week.

Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Have a great weekend!

Sincerely,
 
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



Dear Parents & Guardians,

Our months of planning on what to do when we have a positive case of COVID-19 in one of our schools was put to the test this week, and I couldn’t be more proud of our staff, students and families. The safety of our students and staff is my number one priority. Thank you for continuing to show the rest of Central New York what it means to work together and be B’ville strong!

I have a few updates that I would like to share with you this week:
  • Several of our athletic teams – Boys and Girls soccer, gymnastics, field hockey, Boys golf, Girls tennis, and Boys and Girls cross country – will start practice on Monday. #GoBees
  • Football, cheerleading and Boys and Girls volleyball has been moved to March. Our athletic director announced this week that the fall swim varsity/modified season will also be delayed until March. The decision was made as a league due to changes in regulations and several districts not having access to their team’s home pool.
  • We are thrilled to announce that the Baldwinsville Marching Bees will be able to return to the field this school year. Band Director Casey Vanderstouw and his team of instructors are currently finalizing safe rehearsal and performance procedures, music and drill.  Details regarding upcoming rehearsal dates will be announced soon.
  • Last month, families were given the option to return to school in a hybrid (in-person and remote) or a 100% remote (virtual) learning environment. We understand that some families are interested in switching their decision. In our reopening plan, we informed families that selections will remain in place for a marking period at a minimum. As circumstances change, the District will make adjustments and communicate options to students and families.
  • Reminder: If you are looking for a "No Image List" request form or an application for free and reduced meals, please check your Hive newsletter that was mailed to your home. If you need a form, please email sbuckshot@bville.org.
  • Meals are available for Hive and Buzz students when they are learning remotely and for students who are 100 percent remote. The meals are free for qualified families or available for purchase. Visit our website for pickup times and locations.
Check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.


Have a great weekend!

Sincerely,
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 

September 8, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Tomorrow – September 9 -- is the first day of school for the majority of our students. The Buzz Cohort, 100% Remote and K-2 students will be starting school tomorrow. The Hive Cohort will return on Monday, September 14.

I’m very excited, and I hope you and your child are also excited!

We have several reminders for those students who are returning to in-person instruction:

  • Students are required to wear a face covering on the school bus and inside our schools. Bandanas and gaiter-style face coverings will not be acceptable. CLICK HERE to learn more.
  • Students should bring a completed COVID-19 Health Screening Questionnaire to school with them. Students will receive a packet of questionnaires on the first day.  
  • If you have questions about food service, read our Q&A from Food Service Director Brian Wright. CLICK HERE
  • If you have specific questions about your school, watch your building’s Q&A webinar. CLICK HERE
  • All of our principals have created welcome back videos for our students. Watch all videos on our website. CLICK HERE
  • I answered questions from two of our Van Buren Elementary School students about back-to-school for a special edition of Breakfast with the Superintendent. Watch the video on our website. CLICK HERE

Reminders for students who are starting at-home instruction:

  • The Distance Learning Guide is posted on our website. CLICK HERE
  • The Q&A Webinar, which was held this morning, can be watched on our website. CLICK HERE

Reminders for all families:

  • Parent technology tutorials will help families during remote instruction: CLICK HERE
  • OCM BOCES created tutorials for Google products: CLICK HERE
  • The school calendar is available online and will be mailed later this month: CLICK HERE

I hope everyone has a fantastic first day! #BeePride

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools
 



September 4, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

It is with a heavy heart that I inform you that two of our students passed away yesterday after a terrible automobile accident on the NYS Thruway. Maryella and Elizabeth Annal were Palmer Elementary School students.
 
The loss of a child is the most difficult part of any job. We all grieve differently and grief is a process. Please reach out to a loved one, trusted friend, a member of our counseling team, or myself if you need to talk. We are a big family and today it devastates me to announce that we have lost two of our own. Let's come together and support each other, our students, and families.

As I write this letter, I am grieving. The work that I have been doing since last night as Superintendent has been heart wrenching. We are now just days away from the return to school for the majority of our students. Wednesday, September 9th is the first day for 100% remote learners, K-2 and the Buzz cohort.  The Hive cohort students will start on Monday, September 14th.

We have several updates to give you from the past week:

  • The District is hosting a 100% Remote Learning Webinar to allow families, who have chosen this model for the 2020-21 school year, the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the student learning experience. The webinar, which will feature a Q&A session will be held at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, September 8, 2020. Registration is required. Click here to register. The video of the webinar will be posted on our website after the webinar. 
  • The District would like to clarify protocols for students and staff members experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever or chills, 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) who have not been diagnosed as COVID-19 positive -- Based on updated NYSED, NYSDOH, and Onondaga County Health Department guidance, any student or staff member experiencing a symptom of COVID-19 will be required meet the following criteria (all 3 criteria) in order to return to school or work:
    1. Documentation of evaluation by a healthcare provider indicating the person is diagnosed with another condition and is clear to return to school,
    2. a negative COVID-19 test result, and
    3. no fever (temperature less than 100 degrees F) without the use of fever reducing medicine for 24 hours and symptom resolution.
  • If you have questions about Food Service this school year, visit the Food Service webpage on our website to read a Q&A and view breakfast and lunch menus.
  • Breakfast with the Superintendent will continue during the school year and was moved to Saturday mornings. Tune in at 9 a.m. this Saturday for a special back-to-school episode.
  • We received word from the printers and The Hive was mailed and should be arriving to your homes soon. Inside you’ll find important forms for the school year. The school calendar will be mailed later this month, but you can check out the PDF version on our website now.
  • New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) is expected to release guidance today, which we plan to review as we await further guidance from Section III Athletics on fall athletics.
  • While we haven’t received guidance from the state as it relates to the performing arts, specifically marching band, I’ve volunteered to attend a meeting on Wednesday with area superintendents to discuss our options. I will hopefully be able to report back more information next week.

We will continue to provide updates on a regular basis as we work through our reopening process.  Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.  Please be on the lookout on Tuesday for an announcement with reminders for the first day of school. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools
 



August 28, 2020
 
Dear Parents & Guardians,

Time is flying by, but that means we are so much closer to the beginning of the school year and the return of students to our classrooms for the first time since March 16.

The first day of school is Wednesday, September 9 for the Buzz Cohort, 100 percent remote, and 100 percent in-person students.  The first day of school for the Hive Cohort students is Monday, September 14. Earlier this summer we adjusted our 2020-2021 calendar to bring back our teachers and support staff on Tuesday, September 1. We will hold Superintendent Conference Days on September 1, 2, 3 and 8 to help prepare staff for the new protocols and procedures associated with this unique school year.

The District is buzzing. Our principals, administrators and staff continue to work hard as the summer is winding down. Here are a few updates and reminders for this week:

  • Teacher assignments and class schedules for students will be available in the School Tool portal beginning at 3 p.m. today.  Click HERE to access the portal. 
  • Building specific reopening webinars hosted by the leadership team at each building were held this week. Visit your school’s webpage on our District website to watch the video or click HERE to watch all videos.
  • Students attending in-person classes will need to bring in a Student COVID-19 Health Screening Questionnaire every day. The form for the first day of school will be mailed to families and a packet of blank questionnaires will be sent home with students on the first day of in-person school. What does the form look like? It can be found on our website HERE.
  • The District will be sending out the traditional school calendar, but it is delayed and expected to arrive to families later next month. In the meantime, our staff will be updating our calendar on our website. Due to the many uncertainties revolving school activities, the online calendar will be your best source for up-to-date events and activities.
  • After further review of our District’s policy on face coverings and research on the use of some of the styles, we have decided to ban the use of gaiter-style face coverings and bandanas. Studies show they are poor at preventing respiratory particles from entering the air thereby less effective in protecting others.

Governor Cuomo gave approval this week for lower-risk sports to start practicing on September 21 and then play after that. We are looking into what this means for our District as we await more guidance from the State Education Department, New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) and the Section III Athletics. We are also awaiting more guidance on extra-curricular activities and the performing arts. We want to offer these activities for our students because we believe in their value in achieving the full potential of our students, but we have to do it safely. We are going to let science guide us. We have to follow the guidelines set forth from the above state organizations. We are expecting further guidance from NYSPHSAA next week. We will update you as soon as any plans are finalized.

We will continue to provide updates on a regular basis as we work through our reopening process.  Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,
Matthew J. McDonald, Superintendent of Schools



August 21, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Another Friday has arrived as we draw closer to the first day of school for students and staff.

We are continuing to release more information to help families get prepared for this unprecedented school year.  I would like to take a moment to highlight what has been released this week and preview what’s to come next week.

  • We hosted three webinars via Zoom this week to allow our school community (parents, teachers, students, etc.) to ask questions as we prepare for the return of in-person and remote instruction this September. These opportunities were conducted as part of Governor Cuomo's expectations that school districts offer three Q&A sessions before August 21, 2020. Watch the videos from the three webinars HERE.
  • Our school librarians have compiled tutorials to help parents with technology. The tutorials guide families through how to use Seesaw, which will be used in our K-2 classrooms, and how to use Google Classroom, which will be used in our 3rd-12th grade classrooms. There’s a variety of other videos to help families with technology. The webpage also lists contact information for our school librarians, who will be available to assist families when school starts. Check out the tutorials HERE.
  • Our elementary school principals created a video to show students some changes that will be in effect for the upcoming school year. Watch the video HERE.
  • The District is providing building specific reopening webinars next week hosted by the leadership team at each building. This is an opportunity for students and families to ask questions specific to their school. All webinars will be live-streamed and recorded for future viewing. Register HERE.

I also wanted to clarify a media report from earlier this week. Special Education Director Rocco Nalli spoke to CNYCentral about what special education will look like this fall. Please note that the story mentions that "scheduling for grades 6-12 is expected to be released Friday," but scheduling is expected to be released Friday, August 28 -- not today. We want to get student class schedules and teacher assignments to our families as soon as possible, but as of today, we are still finalizing schedules.

We will continue to provide updates on a regular basis as we work through our reopening process.  Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools
 




August 14, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

I can’t believe it is Friday already -- where has the time gone? The days and weeks seem to get faster and faster as we grow closer to opening day for our students and staff.  

The District continues to work tirelessly in preparing for reopening of schools on September 9, 2020. This week’s communication is solely designated to provide information related to where the district is in our re-opening process. Please take a moment to review the information provided below. 

  • We concluded our Re-opening Webinar Series last week.  We thank our students, families, and employees for participating in the informational forums.  If you missed them, you can watch them HERE.  Q&A Documents for each webinar are also located on the website.
  • I would like to announce that the Baldwinsville Central School District will be hosting three (3) additional Webinars via Zoom for our students and families, as well as one Webinar for district employees to allow our school community and employees to ask questions as we prepare for the return of in-person and remote instruction in September.  These opportunities are being conducted as part of Governor Cuomo's expectations that school districts offer Q&A sessions before August 21, 2020.  The Q&A Webinar Events will be hosted by me, Superintendent of Schools Matthew McDonald, and Deputy Superintendent Joseph DeBarbieri.  The webinar events will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to ask questions of the district's re-entry plan.  There will be no formal presentation just Q&A.  To register for any of the events, please click HERE.   
The events will be live-streamed on the district's Facebook page for any person unable to register through Zoom. Additionally, video recordings will be made available following each event on our district website. 
  • The district will be providing School specific Re-opening Webinars (8 total - one per school) hosted by each building's leadership team to inform students and families of what building schedules will look like in September.  This will also be an opportunity for students and families to ask questions specific to their school of attendance.  More information regarding these informational webinars will be shared in next week's communication.
  • I am happy to announce that following the completion of student and family selections / registrations of preferred learning options (remote or in-person/hybrid) we are able to have full-time (5 days a week) in-person instruction for grades K, 1, and 2, in all elementary school buildings.  Having our primary-aged students return full-time does not change our anticipated class sizes.  The number of students that chose full remote instruction at the five elementary schools has allowed us to add sections to accommodate small class sizes even with additional grades K, 1, and 2 classes.  The learning environment will meet the state’s guidance of six foot spacing between students.  There will be more detailed information forth coming next week from your building administrator.
  • Cohorts (Buzz and Hive) for grades 3 through 12 have been completed and can be found on the SchoolTool portal.  Click HERE to view directions and access the SchoolTool portal.  We are thrilled we are able to provide cohort information for grades 3-12 prior to our scheduled date of August 21, 2020.  As you would expect, grades K, 1, and 2 will not be provided a cohort since students will now be attending in-person full-time (5 days per week).
  • The Baldwinsville Central School District will be providing five days/week of in-person instruction for students with disabilities that receive integrated co-teaching services in grades 3, 4, and 5.  Special education programs and services will continue to be provided in the least restrictive environment.  Information regarding students with disabilities in grades 6 through 12 will be provided at a later date.  If you would like more information regarding your child's special education program and services, please contact Director of Special Education Rocco Nalli at 315-635-4570 or rnalli@bville.org
  • We have received confirmation and clarified guidance on the requirements for Testing and Contract Tracing.  In terms of testing, the district will work with Onondaga County to announce locations for mobile testing sites for staff and high school students so that they can be tested before school begins.  This service is 100% optional for the students and staff -- It is completely up to the individual staff member or student (with parent/guardian permission) to be tested.  This offering / option may be helpful and convenient for our school community.  Contact tracing of all confirmed COVID-19 cases is the responsibility of the Onondaga County Health Department.  Experienced professionals from the County Health Department have already traced 3,400 within our county.  They will continue to do so when schools reopen working in coordination with our school administration and healthcare team.  More information about testing and contact tracing can be found on our website by clicking HERE  
We will continue to provide updates on a regular basis as we work through our re-opening process.  Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools


 
August 7, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

As you may be aware, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this morning that schools throughout the state can reopen this fall.  Based on the current guidance, our reopening in Baldwinsville will include Hybrid and Remote (Virtual) learning environments for students as previously communicated. We continue to review and process changes to requirements so we can plan accordingly for staff and student return.
 
Today is the final day for parents and guardians to make a selection of their preferred learning environment for each student. The SchoolTool Parent Portal can be accessed here and is best viewed on a computer or tablet. Directions can be found here for completing the questionnaire. Please make your selection by the end of the day.
 
We held our Reopening Webinar Series over the past three weeks to include families and community members in our decision-making process for returning to school this fall. Six webinars were held and videos of each are listed on our website. We also answered the questions that were submitted during each webinar. Read the answers and watch the videos HERE.  Additionally, we are planning to provide more webinar opportunities for staff, students, and families to ask questions and prepare for opening day. Please be on the lookout for these future events.
 
Thank you to all those in the community who participated in the webinars. It has been a great experience for us to gain your feedback. Your opinion is valuable to us and your support is appreciated. Thank you also to our panelists, moderator and staff for all of the time and work that made these webinars possible.
 
The District has been working closely with the Northwest Family YMCA to continue our exceptional partnership with its school-age childcare programs that encompasses before and after school care as well as full-day care options. We will continue to offer the YMCA’s programs as in past years, and are looking to expand and discuss additional opportunities. As these discussions progress, the District and YMCA will communicate all the program details.
 
I wanted to also take a moment to say thank you, farewell, and congratulations to two of our school resource officers who have retired. Baldwinsville Police Officer Martin Knaul has retired after 13 years as the SRO at C.W. Baker High School and Onondaga County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Nord has retired after 11 years as an SRO at Durgee Junior High School.
 
Thank you both for your service to our district. You have made our schools, our district and our community a better place. Remember, once a Bee, always a Bee!
 
Have a great weekend!
 
Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
 
Sincerely,
 
Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools



July 31, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians:

Our administrators, leaders, teachers and staff members have been working for months to develop a plan to safely reopen our school buildings. 

We received state guidelines for reopening schools in mid-July from the New York State Education Department and Health Department. After careful analysis of the guidelines, district leadership -- with input from representatives of all of the District’s stakeholders – has determined that students will be given the option to return to school in a Hybrid (in-person and remote) or a 100% Remote (virtual) learning environment.  A 3-page overview of our District’s commitments and highlights of the re-entry plan can be accessed here.

For the Hybrid learning environment students will experience a three (3) days in-person and three (3) days remote learning sequence / pattern which will continue for the entire academic year or until circumstances change and the District is permitted to accommodate all students within our school buildings based on health and safety guidelines.   The Hybrid sequence / pattern can be accessed here.  The Hybrid model cohorts will be based on neighborhood / bus route so that families and siblings will follow the same schedule.  More details will follow as plans are finalized and decisions by Governor Cuomo are made regarding reopening schools in September.  

Beginning today, Friday, July 31, 2020, through Friday, August 7, 2020, parents are asked to log into their SchoolTool Parent Portal accounts to make selections of their preferred learning environment for each student. The SchoolTool Parent Portal can be accessed here and is best viewed on a computer or tablet. Directions can be found here for completing the questionnaire.

There are more decisions to be made and more details to be finalized. We are grateful for the continued support from the community. 

Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more. Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald

Superintendent of Schools
 



July 24, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

Happy Friday! The weekend weather looks beautiful, which is perfect for honoring the Class of 2020 on Saturday!
 
I hope you are enjoying the summer weather, too. I wanted to take a moment to send you a few announcements and reminders:
  • We held the first two webinars in our Re-opening Webinar Series this week. If you missed them, you can watch them HERE. Additionally, I would be remiss if I didn't give a huge shout out to my deputy superintendent, Joe DeBarbieri, who has taken the lead in providing these re-opening webinars. His vision, leadership and love for kids is always at the forefront of everything he does. THANK YOU, MR. DEBARBIERI!
  • We have four webinars remaining. Registration is required. Visit our website for topic and panelists information, and to register.
  • We sent out a back-to-school survey via email to parents, staff members, and students on July 15. View the survey report by CLICKING HERE.
  • A new video from our series “Breakfast with the Superintendent,” was posted. The series is geared towards our elementary students. Watch it HERE.
  • Members of the Class of 2020 who didn’t take part in our June 21st graduation will walk the stage on Saturday to receive diplomas. The graduation ceremony will be identical to the June 21st event and will be livestreamed on our website. Photos will be posted on our Facebook page after the ceremony.
  • After the ceremony, the C.W. Baker High School PTSA is hosting the “Bee Strong – Graduation Celebration” starting at 11 a.m. The event will safely bring groups of students from the Class of 2020 together for fun, food and raffle prizes.
  • The district continues to collaborate with the Food Bank of CNY to provide food for families throughout the community. Last week, we provided food for about 150 families. The mobile food pantry will continue to be available every other Monday from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in front of C.W. Baker High School. The next date the food distribution truck will be here is August 3rd. Due to the increased participation we ask that when picking up food, families utilize Albert Palmer Lane and enter Baker High School circle from that direction to avoid traffic congestion on Oneida Street. School social workers are also available to deliver food or set up alternative pick up times if you can’t get here when the truck is available. Once distribution is over social workers will deliver food to housing developments throughout the community. To set up a delivery, alternate pick up time or get more information about alternate locations, please email klamacchia@bville.org or call 315-638-6052.
We are committed to providing additional updates on a regular basis as circumstances warrant.

Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
 
Sincerely,
 
Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools
 

July 17, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,
As we close out another week, I wanted to send a personal thank you to the Baldwinsville community. These are trying times, but I know that if we work together, we will be able to not only get through them but come out better on the other side.
 
Here are a few announcements and reminders:
  1. Our Re-opening Webinar Series starts at 6 p.m. Tuesday, July 21st. Registration is required. Visit our website for topic and panelists information, and to register.
  2. We sent out a back-to-school survey via email to parents, staff members, and students on Wednesday. The survey is also posted on our website. The survey will close on Tuesday.
  3. The mobile food pantry truck will be in front of C.W. Baker High School from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Monday, July 20th.
  4. Our new video series for elementary school students, “Breakfast with the Superintendent,” launched this week. Visit our website to watch the first episode. New episodes will be available at 9 a.m. on Wednesdays. Have an idea for an episode, email sbuckshot@bville.org.
  5. The New York Public High School Athletic Association (N.Y.S.P.H.S.A.A.) announced Thursday the delay to the start of the fall athletics season. The new start date will be September 21, 2020. Visit our website for more information.
  6. Graduation update: We had initially planned a second opportunity on Saturday, July 25th to host a more traditional graduation ceremony for the entire Class of 2020. However, continued restrictions from New York State regarding gathering sizes and graduations are still in effect and therefore we are unable to gather the entire Class of 2020 and their families together for a traditional ceremony. However, we are still going to honor graduates who did not attend the June 21st graduation. On Saturday, July 25 at 9 a.m., students who did not attend the event on June 21 are invited to campus to receive their diplomas and walk the stage just as their classmates were able to do. These students and families are being contacted individually with details about the ceremony. Read more HERE.
  7. Class of 2020 Celebration: The C.W. Baker High School PTSA has been working hard to host a celebration event for the Class of 2020 and has developed a plan to safely bring groups of students together for some fun, food, and raffle prize drawings following the ceremony to award remaining diplomas. The PTSA will award raffle prizes and provide refreshments for groups of students at a unique event, which will include a traditional graduation cap toss, planned for July 25. Read more HERE.
We are committed to providing additional updates on a regular basis as circumstances warrant. Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.
 
Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools
 

July 10, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

When our school buildings closed last March we told you that “we were all in this together” and that statement still holds true as we work to reopen. We want your voices to be heard and your questions to be answered.

As we announced earlier this week, we will be offering a series of webinars, which will include interactive polls, Q&A sessions, and surveys in the coming weeks on the topics of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), Health and Safety, Curriculum and Instruction for kindergarten through 12th grade, Special Education Services, Transportation, Athletics, and Performing Arts. The schedule for the webinars is below.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo also made an announcement this week on his timeline for providing guidance to school districts. He said final guidance from the state will be available on July 13th and school reopening plans will be due by July 31st. Cuomo said he will make a decision on reopening schools, which could be regionally based, during the first week of August.

In the meantime, we will continue our work together! Register for the webinars by clicking the links below. You can also visit our website or social media pages for more information.

I’m also excited to announce a video series for our elementary school students that will launch on Wednesday, July 15th called “Breakfast with the Superintendent.” A video will be posted on our website and social media pages at 9 a.m. every Wednesday. The video will be geared towards students in kindergarten through 5th grade. For the first week, I will be answering students' questions. Parents and guardians can submit their child's question via email to sbuckshot@bville.org or text to 315-516-0593. If possible, please send a video clip of your child asking the question, your child's first name, age and school.
We are committed to providing additional updates on a regular basis as circumstances warrant. Please check your email and our website, www.bville.org, for updates, links and more.
 
Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald
Superintendent of Schools

Re-opening Webinar Series
 
Health and Safety: Registration Information
Tuesday, July 21, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Julie Carpenter, School Nurse Supervisor (panelist)
Rick Foederer, Chief Operations Officer (panelist)
Kris Denton, Baker High School Principal (panelist)
Alex Ewing, Palmer Elementary School Principal (panelist)
 
Curriculum & Instruction (K-12): Registration Information
Thursday, July 23, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Tony Cardamone, Director of Elementary Curriculum & Instruction (panelist)
Renee Burnett, Director of Secondary Curriculum & Instruction (panelist)
RJ DeLisle, Director of Instructional Technology (panelist)
Christina Morgan, Ray Middle School Principal (panelist)
Jennifer Homeyer, McNamara Elementary School Principal (panelist)
 
Special Education Services & Supports for Students: Registration Information
Tuesday, July 28, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Rocco Nalli, Director of Special Education (panelist)
Karrie LaMacchia, Director of Pupil & Personnel Services (panelist)
TJ Fraher, Durgee Jr. High School Principal (panelist)
Melissa Chiodo, Reynolds Elementary School Principal (panelist)
Jenna Wolken, School Psychologist - Ray Middle School (panelist)
 
Social Emotional Learning / Mental Health Services: Registration Information
Thursday, July 30, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Danielle Nahorney, Director of Academic Services and Accountability (panelist)
Karrie LaMacchia, Director of Pupil & Personnel Services (panelist)
Thomas Coughlin, Elden Elementary School Principal (panelist)
Bill Allan, Assistant Principal - Baker High School (panelist)
Meredith Riggs, Social Worker - Baker High School (panelist)
 
Transportation & Food Services: Registration Information
Tuesday, August 4, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Dana Nelson, School Transportation Director (panelist)
Brian Wright, School Lunch Director (panelist)
James Rodems, Assistant Superintendent for Management Services (panelist)
Tiffany Turner, School Business Official (panelist)
Julie Carpenter, School Nurse Supervisor (panelist)
 
Athletics & Performing Arts: Registration Information
Thursday, August 6, 2020
6 to 7 p.m.
Moderator / Panelists:
Joseph DeBarbieri, Deputy Superintendent (moderator)
Chris Campolieta, Director of Athletics, PE & Health
Tony Cardamone, Director of Elementary Curriculum & Instruction (panelist)
Renee Burnett, Director of Secondary Curriculum & Instruction (panelist)
Jennifer Terpening, Assistant Principal - Baker High School Principal (panelist)
Cindy Cronin, Van Buren Elementary School Principal (panelist)

Download webinar series information
 

July 7, 2020

Dear Parents & Guardians,

The uncertainty surrounding back-to-school plans is on everyone’s mind, and we wanted to let you know that as a district, we are committed to working together to plan and prepare for students return in September. Student health and safety is our number one priority. The District will continue to provide the community with updates through the summer.

School districts are still awaiting guidance from the Governor’s Office, the New York State Education Department and the Onondaga County Health Department on returning to in-person instruction. In the meantime, we have started conversations with transportation, food service, curriculum and instruction, special education, facilities, nurses, and union officials. Our meetings have been productive with lots of passion for students being demonstrated. These discussions will continue throughout the summer.

We need to wait to hear from the state before we can make final plans for the return to our school buildings, which we know can be frustrating for families who anticipate a need to make arrangements for the fall. We share your frustration and we want you to know that we are moving forward with preparations for the start of the 2020-2021 school year.

Some of those preparations include the purchasing of enhanced filters for our heating and ventilation systems and more sanitation equipment for all of our buildings. We’ve also purchased more personal protective equipment (PPE) for our staff.

The district has been researching and reviewing reopening documents created by schools and districts in other states to help guide us through our process. Additionally, a team of administrators will take part in a regional meeting of school leaders on Wednesday, July 8th to discuss re-entry plans, the process and the challenges we need to face in order to bring our staff and students back to a safe and healthy environment in September. 

As we explore our options, we want your voices to be heard and we want to make sure that you have answers to all of your questions. In order to do this and allow all interested community members to participate, we will offer a series of webinars including interactive polls, Q&A, and surveys in the coming weeks on the topics of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL), Health and Safety, Curriculum and Instruction for kindergarten through 12th grade, Special Education Services, Transportation, Athletics, and Performing Arts.

An announcement on the dates and times of the webinars will be coming soon. Your feedback and ideas are very important to us.

Sincerely,

Matthew J. McDonald                                  
Superintendent of Schools  

Joseph M. DeBarbieri 
Deputy Superintendent                 

Joan Reeves
President, Board of Education