Welcome to the 2021-22 school year! The Cato-Meridian Central School District reopening plan can be found below and additional reopening resources can be found on these subpages. Please keep in mind that this plan is subject to change. We will continue to keep our community informed with timely updates. Visit our COVID-19 community resources website for more information.
Cleaning Protocols: We will continue to spray disinfectant daily in classrooms and on busses. In buildings we use the Clorox 360 machines with Electrostatic technology. High contact surfaces will be wiped down throughout the school day.
Transportation: Masks are required on school buses. Children of the same household will be seated together on school busses. Disinfectant spray will be used after each bus run. Windows and roof hatches will be open whenever possible. Social distancing will be enforced whenever possible.
Temperature Checks: Temperature checks will be performed as the student enters the bus. Students who are dropped off at school will also be temperature checked. We ask parents to perform daily temperature checks at home.
School Schedules: We are happy to announce we are returning to a “normal” school schedule. Elementary students will have a normal special schedule (Art, Music, PE) this school year. Elementary school drop off begins at 8:30 and our elementary school will start promptly at 8:45. The Junior-Senior High School drop off is at 7:30 and will start at 7:43.
Social Distancing: While students are in the building we will follow the CDC guidelines of 3 feet social distancing in all classrooms. Seating charts will be maintained for contact tracing purposes.
Contact Tracing: This is completely controlled by the Cayuga County Health Department (CCHD). The school district only assists in contact tracing.
Quarantine Rules: This is completely controlled by the Cayuga County Health Department. As of today (8/19), they have not updated their document for the reopening of school. However we do know if a student/staff member is vaccinated and has no symptoms, they do NOT need to quarantine. Unvaccinated students/staff members are required to quarantine. Again, these are not our rules.
Mask Policy (as of August 19th): On school buses and in our buildings all persons are required to wear a mask. We will take mask breaks throughout the day. Masks are not required outside.
When to Stay Home: If your child(ren) has a fever, please notify your health care provider and do not send your child(ren) to school or to practice. If your child(ren) do not have a fever but are experiencing any of the other symptoms listed below, please don't put others in jeopardy. Do not send them to school or practice and consult your healthcare provider. Prevention is essential.
- Temperature of 100 degrees or higher
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting, diarrhea
Recommendations from Reopening Committee:
- Continue temperature checks.
- Everyone wears masks regardless of vaccination status while on school buses and in school buildings.
- No masks while outdoors.
- Limit access to our buildings during school hours.
School Lunch: We plan on having normal school lunches in the cafeteria. Seating charts in the elementary school will be used for contact tracing purposes. The Jr.-Sr. High School will use our camera system for contact tracing purposes. Whenever possible, we will take students outdoors after they are finished eating.
Monitoring/Review of Plan: The reopening plan will be reviewed monthly at the Administrative Team level. The Superintendent meets monthly with the Health Department and confers with the Medical Director regarding needed adjustments as well. Needed Changes are also discussed at BOE meetings where public comment is available. Families are notified of changes through parent communications as well as through updates made on the school website. Additional public comment may be sent to COVID19Reopening@catomeridian.org.
The Plan will also be revisited through full Reopening Committee Meetings yearly (stakeholders include: Parents, Teachers, Union Leadership, Administration, CCHD, and Medical Director).
Reopening Updates (Fall 2021)
Test to Stay (Until Formal Quarantine Notice): Students who are identified as close contacts in the classroom (non-household contacts) will be offered the opportunity to test to stay until a formal quarantine is issued from the Health Department. As soon as the formal order is issued the student must return home. Parents must transport to access this option.
Testing Protocols: CCHD is allowing the use of Binax card testing of students for those with minimal symptoms. The following symptoms require that a student be evaluated by their health care provider. The medical staff may identify other students who need to be evaluated as well (for example, suspected strep throat).
- Shortness of breath
- Loss of taste and smell
- Worsening symptoms
Surveillance Testing: All asymptomatic students who have been exposed (both those deemed a close contact and those not (e.g. in the same classroom)) have the option to be tested at school. Parents also have the option of requesting asymptomatic testing by contacting the school nurses.
Quarantine Meals: Quarantined students are eligible for breakfast and lunch while quarantined. Please click the button – Quarantine Meals under COVID-19 Resources to order breakfast/lunch for pick up (coming soon).
Public Comment: Questions or comments regarding the Re-opening plan may be emailed to Covid19Reopening@catomeridian.org. The plan may be revised based on these changes in regulations, recommendations from the Health Department or NYSED.