LIVERPOOL, N.Y. (NCC News) — Liverpool school administrators met Thursday to map out steps they’d take if COVID-19 spread throughout the district. This emergency meeting came after Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced public schools will be required to shut down for 24 hours for disinfection in the case that someone within the district is tested positive for the virus.
Although county officials say no one in the county has a confirmed case of COVID-19, school districts are preparing for what could be longer than a 24-hour closure. According to the Superintendent Mark Potter, staff, students, and parents have been following general health precautions such as washing hands with soap and water and sanitizing surfaces. The school district has already canceled several performances, competitions and athletic events.
Potter said that if someone tested positive for the virus, the schools should close for more than the initial 24 hours.
SUNY campuses and other universities recently suspended in-person classes and switched to online instruction for the rest of the semester.
Liverpool students in fourth grade and above use Chromebook computers in the classroom at times. Dr. Potter said that shifting the district to online classes could be a possibility if the closure is extended, however, a certain percentage of students will not be able to participate in this type of instruction from their homes.
“We have 20% to 25% of our students and families that don’t have internet access, so there will be a significant inconsistency if we did something online,” Potter said.
If the district closes for an extended period of time, the superintendent said his main concern is the disruption of students’ education.
“We have state testing two weeks after spring break, which is about the middle of April,” Potter said. “I don’t know if they’re planning on suspending that because those are issues relating to if kids don’t test well.”