Back to School Update – August 20, 2021

on August 20, 2021

Superintendent letterheadAugust 20, 2021

Dear Monroe-Woodbury families,

I am writing to share updates regarding the district’s Back-to-School Plan. To help inform our decisions, district leaders consulted members of the reopening committee, the County Executive, Orange County Commissioner of Health and our district physician this week. A common thread throughout these conversations is the district’s unwavering commitment to returning all students to in-person learning five days a week in a safe environment. 

The following safety protocols will be in place for the start of the school year. These preventative measures ultimately support the district’s primary goal of keeping students in school full time.

  • Effective Monday, August 30, all individuals in district buildings will be required to wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status. This decision is based on recommendations and guidance from the school district physician, Orange County Department of Health (DOH), NYS Education Department (NYSED), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy for Pediatrics (AAP). Universal indoor masking in schools will greatly reduce the need for quarantine.
  • This protocol mirrors the universal indoor mask mandate for public schools expected to be announced after incoming NYS Governor Kathy Hochul is sworn into office on August 24.
  • Per CDC order, all passengers and drivers on district school buses are required to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.
  • Ongoing safety protocols, such as maintaining a social distance of three feet when possible, regular cleaning and disinfecting, hand washing procedures, enhanced ventilation and keeping students home when ill, combined with the wearing of masks, will help reduce the transmission of COVID.
  • As indicated in my previous communication, the district will not be offering remote or hybrid instruction. If there are any medical conditions that require special accommodations, parents/guardians should contact their building principal.
  • We are excited to offer athletic events, club meetings and other extracurricular activities for students to enjoy during the 2021-22 school year. 

    I will present an overview of the district’s Back-to-School Plan during the Board of Education meeting on Wednesday, August 25. This meeting will be livestreamed. A link will be available on the district website The plan will be posted to the district website following the meeting.

    Enjoy the final days of summer. We are looking forward to welcoming students back on Wednesday, September 1.

    Warm regards,

    Elsie Rodriguez
    Superintendent of Schools