George Cooke Elementary School COVID-19 Mitigation Plan

George L. Cooke Elementary

Monticello Central School District

Cooke Multi-Layered COVID-19 Mitigation Plan

August 18, 2021


Cooke Will Be Responsive

  • Given the fluidity of the COVID-19 pandemic, this prevention plan should be considered a living document and will be updated frequently as more information becomes available, or as situations change.


Developed in Consultation with Experts



  • Safety
  • Socialization
  • Engagement


In-Person Instruction

  • Our focus continues to be having all our students safely back in school, five days a week. We will not offer a remote option to students. In order to keep our community safe, layering multiple prevention strategies is essential.


Elements of Multi-Layered Mitigation

  • Daily health screening
  • Social distancing
  • Cohorts/pods of individuals
  • Improved ventilation/air quality
  • Handwashing
  • Respiration Hygiene
  • Staying home when sick with symptoms
  • Protocol for returning to school (testing…)
  • Frequent cleaning/disinfecting of facilities


Promoting Vaccination

  • COVID-19 vaccination for all eligible students as well as teachers, staff, and household members is the most critical strategy to help schools safely resume full operations.


Universal Masking

  • We require universal masking indoors in all MCSD school buildings, except when eating. Masks will not be required during outdoor school activities. Mask breaks may only be taken OUTSIDE.

During school transportation:

  • Passengers and drivers must wear a mask on school buses regardless of vaccination status. Bus windows must be open while students are on the bus.



  • Three (3) feet of distance will be maintained between students/staff in all indoor spaces, during lunch and snacks and school buses, to the greatest extent possible.
  • Six (6) feet of distance must be maintained when singing, during physical education, and/or any aerobic activity.


Students and Staff Will Undergo a Temperature Screening When Entering the Building.

  • Have you had COVID-19 symptoms in the past 14 days? These symptoms include sore throat, cough, chills, body aches for unknown reasons, shortness of breath for unknown reasons, loss of smell, loss of taste, or fever at or greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Have you had a positive diagnostic COVID-19 test in the past 14 days?
  • Have you had close contact with a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case in the past 14 days and are unvaccinated?
  • Have you been under quarantine and not cleared to return to work?
  • Have you traveled internationally in the past 14 days?


Attention to Ventilation

  • Window fans may be used to cross ventilate rooms,fans should be pointed away from people, and not be used to recirculate air in a classroom.
  • All classrooms have an air filtration unit.
  • During transportation, in buses and other forms of transportation, windows will be kept open if doing so does not pose a safety risk.


Handwashing and Respiratory Etiquette

  • People should practice handwashing and respiratory etiquette(covering coughs and sneezes) to keep from getting and spreading infectious illnesses including COVID-19.


Staying Home when Sick and Getting Tested

  • Students, teachers, and staff who have symptoms of infectious illness, such as influenza(flu) orCOVID-19, should stay home and be referred to their healthcare provider fort esting and care, regardless of vaccination status.
  • ALL individuals (students, parents, staff…) need to self-monito rbody temperature and general health condition every morning; and stay home if symptomatic.
  • If a parent is considering administering cold medicine for their child, then that child should not be attending school.
  • When in doubt it will be best to keep your student home.


Suspected Individuals will be Isolated

  • Students/staff with a temperature, signs of illness,and/or a positive response to the questionnaire willbe sent to an isolation space, students will be supervised, and parent will be contacted immediately.Students will be escorted from the isolation area totheir parent/guardian. Students/staff will be referredto a healthcare provider and provided resources onCOVID-19 testing.


Parent Contact

  • It is very important that the school is able to make timely contact with a parent if their child needs to be picked-up from school.
  • Inform the office of parent/guardian preference for first contact.
  • Please answer the phone when receiving calls from our Cooke school number 845-794-8830 (rarely is arobo-call sent during the day).


To Return to School, the MCSD, in Consultation With Sullivan County Public Health Services Requires a Previously Symptomatic Individual to Show:

  1. Documentation from a health care provider following evaluation with alternative diagnosis OR
  2. Negative COVID-19 diagnostic test result documentation AND
  3. Symptom resolution, or if COVID-19 positive,official release from isolation notice.


Contact Tracing in Combination with Isolation and Quarantine

  • “Contacts” are adults who have been within six (6) feet of an infected individual for a cumulative total of 15 minutes over a 24-hour period.
  • Unvaccinated individuals who have been deemed a contact will be referred to SCPHS for quarantine.
  • Vaccinated individuals will not be considered contacts and will not be referred to SCPHS. However, should self-monitor for symptoms and be tested 3-5 days after exposure if they become symptomatic.
  • Fully vaccinated contacts do not need to quarantine following an exposure (they can continue to attend school in-person and participate in other activities), so long as they have no symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Any individual who does not want to be referred to SCPHS as a contact because they are vaccinated will need to provide proof of vaccination to the district representative responsible for contact tracing in the building.
  • In the K-12 indoor classroom setting, the contact definition excludes students who were within six(6) feet, and no closer than three (3) feet, of an infected student if both the infected student and the exposed student(s) correctly and consistently wore well-fitting masks the entire time.This exception does not apply to teachers,staff, or other adults in the indoor classroom setting.


Please note that as students are eating in our classrooms, without masks, it is likely that if we have infected students, we will have identified close contacts.


Instruction During Quarantine

  • If students are quarantined, live streamed instruction will be provided by their teacher(s) during the quarantine period.
  • If a teacher is quarantined and is asymptomatic, they will be expected to live stream into their classes and provide instruction according to their teaching schedule.Student work will be posted, shared, and transmitted through the school’s learning management system (LMS).
  • All students and faculty/staff will be issued a district device.Additionally, students with inconsistent broadband access at home may request a district hotspot from their building principal.


Cleaning and Disinfecting

  • MCSD will clean and disinfect buildings once a day.
  • If an individual who has tested positive has been in a district space, that space will be closed, cleaned and disinfected before the space is reoccupied.
  • Cleaning products will be made available in each district building, if individuals would like to clean more frequently.


We are all in this together

  • By following all guidelines, we are making it possible to open our schools, stay open,and to adjust with conditions to lessen mitigation steps when possible…


Masks and Face Coverings

  • Students and staff are required to wear face masks whenever they are on school district property, including a bus.
  • Students must be at their designated spaced desk location when eating.
  • Mask breaks will be provided as needed outside.
  • Students may wear their own appropriate face covering.
  • The district will supply a face mask when necessary.


Students are Excellent Models

  • Students are excellent at following social distancing rules, washing hands, and wearing masks.


Social Distancing/Other Safety Protocols

  • All student movement within the building must be escorted by a staff member.
  • Specials will be held within classrooms or outside for any aerobic activity (PE, singing,…) –as conditions allow PE maybe held in the gymnasium space.


Hygiene and Cleaning Practices

  • Hand washing/use of sanitizer upon entering the building, before and after using the bathroom, before and after recess, before and after eating, as a regular practice “just because” – supplies provided by district.
  • Students will be reminded of the importance of proper respiratory hygiene(covering mouth, use of tissue, as well as proximity, duration,and voice volume impact our breathing).
  • Cleaning and disinfecting of classroom safter lunch, nightly, as needed.
  • Frequent cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces and restrooms throughout the day.


What Happens When a Student is Discovered With Symptoms?

  • Immediately separate staff or student(s) with symptoms such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath-students will be brought to a designated isolation space.
  • Individuals with symptoms need to be transported home or to a health facility depending on severity of symptoms.
  • Areas used by the symptomatic individual will be cleaned and disinfected.


What Notifications Are Made?

  • The school will immediately notify local health officials, staff,and all families of any diagnosed COVID-19 cases.
  • Contact tracing involved with any COVID-19 diagnosis will take place and individuals with close contact will be informed to self-monitor for symptoms and follow CDC guidance.
  • All confidentiality will be maintained in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
  • All NYS Department of Health and CDC guidance will be followed.


Arrival & Dismissal Procedures

  • Students will dismiss to buses using the same entrance/exit used in the morning
  • Tardy students must enter at the main lobby
  • Parent/guardian will remain in their car and students will be brought out; pick-up will begin after the first set of buses depart (TBD)
  • Bus pick-up and transport is only to and from the primary residence


Update Your Parent/Student Information

  • Make sure your primary residence information is updated; this is the address that transportation will use to make bus routes.
  • Create your SchoolMessenger account (Download APP); no more paper forms.
  • Emergency contact information is parent/guardian responsibility within the SchoolTool Parent Portal system (on district web page).



  • Math, ELA, science, social studies will take place according to established instructional time guidelines.
  • Students have one special per day which will take place in the special area classroom except for library. Library will be on a cart and push into the classroom.
  • Intervention, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech, guidance counseling, counseling w/social worker and/or other services will also take place.


iPads will be issued to each student

  • Plan for positive charging habits if the iPad is sent home with your child.


Food Services

  • “Grab and Go” Breakfasts brought to student pod; students eat in the classroom at fixed distance location.
  • Plan to send individual snacks for only your student; individually wrapped snacks will be provided for students without a snack on an as-needed basis.
  • Lunch will be brought to each student classroom; students will eat in the classroom at their fixed distance location.
  • Food allergies will be attended to through collaboration and communication between the school nurse, administrators,the classroom teacher, food services, staff delivering food, and staff monitoring student lunch.



Behavior and Expectations

  • Students must follow the standard code of conduct .
  • Parents will be notified immediately if there are issues involving mask wearing, daily health screening screening, distancing, and/or hygiene practices as well as any other code of conduct issues.



Virginia Gallet, principal
845-794-8830 Ext. 40910

Sarah Mootz, assistant principal
845-794-8830 Ext. 40928