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Principal Rucinski's 8.27.21 message

8/27/2021

Message from the Principal
August 27, 2021
Dear St. Mary's School Parents and Guardians,

I am looking forward to gathering with our entire school community for our Back to School Night on Thursday, September 2nd from 6-8 PM.  This will be a time for families to meet their new teachers and drop off supplies in their new classrooms.  Our PTO will be providing hamburgers, hot dogs and ice cream for our families to enjoy.  Also, our uniform closet will be open for all families to get ready for the new school year.  While masks do not need to be worn when outside, they must be worn by students and their families while inside our school building.

Similar to last year, St. Mary's School is committed to providing our students with an outstanding education in the safest environment possible. As previously mentioned, our school has created a layered mitigation strategy that will take into consideration the local infection rates.  In this email below, you will find some of the specific details of our Back to School Plan.  Our entire community did such a great job last year and I know this year will be no different.
 
As we prepare for the start of the new school year, I would like to provide you with a few important updates:

School Uniforms are available through our School Store.  Gym uniforms, school polos and our brand new quarter zips for Middle School students are now available.  If you would like an updated school uniform order form, you can access that by clicking here.  Uniform orders can be picked up at the Back to School Night.

We are actively seeking volunteers who would like to serve on the PTO.  Representatives from the PTO will be on hand at the Back to School Night to discuss volunteering opportunities.  
We have several positions of various commitment levels that we are looking to fill.  As you may know, the PTO leads fundraising for the school and plans community events and extracurricular programs.  Thank you for considering this important service to our school.

Physical Exams are needed for students in Grades K, 1, 3, 5 and 7. If you have not already done so, please send a copy to the main office.

Sincerely,
Mr. Matthew Rucinski
Back to School Plan

Our ultimate goal is to protect the health and safety of our school community members by minimizing risk. In addition, we hope to maintain in-person instruction, keep our school building open, and minimize the amount of students and staff placed in quarantine due to exposure. With those goals in mind, please take a moment to review our important opening of school protocols:

  • As long as permitted by public health officials, and as circumstances allow, our school will be open for in-person instruction and learning.  
  • Masks are required to be worn by all individuals inside our school regardless of vaccination status when appropriate social distancing cannot be consistently maintained. Mask breaks with social distancing will be provided throughout the day.
  • Masks are not required outdoors when appropriate physical distancing can be maintained.
  • Masks must always be worn on school buses. 
  • We will maintain at least 3-feet of physical distancing between students in classrooms whenever feasible. 
  • Students will maintain at least 6-feet of distance or be separated by barriers when masks are removed for eating.  Students will have assigned seating in the cafeteria. 
  • Students and staff will have every opportunity to properly wash their hands throughout the day. 
  • Cleaning and sanitizing will remain rigorous on a daily basis.  Our school has invested in several electrostatic sprayers which will be used in each classroom daily. 
  • We will follow all ventilation protocols, including mechanical and natural ventilation where appropriate.  All of our classrooms will have open windows, a window air conditioning unit and portable fan units.  We will also utilize air purifiers in strategic locations throughout the school. 
  • Whenever possible, physical education classes will be conducted outdoors in appropriate weather conditions.  When classes are conducted indoors, mask-wearing is required. 
  • Working in cooperation with our county department of health, quarantining protocols will continue to be followed.  
  • Parents, guardians, and staff members are urged to be mindful of symptoms of illness, to stay home if they show signs and symptoms, and to seek testing when COVID-19 symptoms are present. 
  • In certain scenarios this school year on-site testing may be recommended. COVID-19 testing will not be administered without written parent/guardian consent. 
  • We will continue to consult with the Saratoga County Department of Health to monitor community transmission rates, vaccination coverage statistics, and occurrences of outbreaks to make decisions on the degree of prevention strategies.

While we are opening school with these protocols in place, we should all be prepared for changes at any time. We may also have to monitor for mandated protocols put into place by outside entities, such as Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Department of Health.

We have no greater responsibility than the health and safety of our community members. We are confident that our plan will allow us to proceed safely with the opening of school, change protocols when appropriate, and exercise flexibility if circumstances allow us to do so.  

Thank you for your continued support and anticipated cooperation. 

Parent-Student Handbook
Electronic Version of Parent-Student Handbook

Family Response Form
Welcome Senora Verde!
Mrs. Cara Green, aka Senora Verde, will join our school community as our Spanish teacher, replacing Ms. Rucinski who has decided to pursue other opportunities outside of teaching.  Senora Verde comes to us after teaching Spanish for many years at St. Clement's School in Saratoga Springs.
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St. Mary's School
12 6th St
Waterford, NY 12188-2306

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