Monticello High School COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention Plan 2021-2022

In the background is a tan brick building and a sign that says Monticello High School. Over the photo are the words Monticello High School and Monticello Central School District


COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention Plan


This document represents planning that is fluid and flexible. Plans may change to better accommodate student needs and promote safety for everyone. Thank you for your understanding.


Required Components Within Monticello High School

It is our goal to balance best educational practices with safety of both students and staff. The following precautions must be taken to ensure the safety of our school community.

  • Students and staff will wear masks consistently during the day. Exceptions include when eating, drinking, and if asked to remove their mask by our nurse or school administrator to ensure the safety, health, and wellness of the student.
  • Students and adults who qualify for a medical exemption to wearing a mask will be accommodated and alternative personal protective equipment will be explored for them and others who are in proximity to them during the day. These individuals will also be provided with a special identification card that they will be required to have on their person at all times for security purposes.
  • Daily health screenings for employees and students are required. Anyone with a temperature of 100℉ or greater will result in non-admission to school.
  • Parents are asked to take their student’s temperature before coming to school. If a student has a temperature of 100℉ or greater, do not send them to school and notify the main office for attendance purposes. If a student has a recorded temperature of 100℉ or greater upon arrival at school, or during the school day, the parent/guardian or a listed emergency contact in our SchoolTool system must be available to pick up the student.
  • School employees are asked to take their own temperature prior to coming to school and will also have their temperature checked upon arrival.
  • Contact tracing and coordination with local health department guidelines will be followed.
  • Daily cleaning and disinfecting protocols will be followed.
  • Shared school supplies, including books, will be minimized and when shared, the items will be disinfected.
  • School visitors will be restricted to those required for school business and by appointment only.
  • Students and staff will be trained on proper hand hygiene practices.

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Returning Students Following COVID-19 Indicators or Who Have Tested Positive

The district has established protocols and procedures, in consultation with Sullivan County Public Health Services, about the requirements for determining when individuals (regardless of vaccination status) who exhibit COVID-like symptoms can return to school. Those individuals who DO NOT test positive and are not directly linked to a positive case can return to school when they are able to show:

  1. Documentation from a health care provider following evaluation with alternative diagnosis OR
  2. Negative COVID-19 diagnostic test result AND
  3. Symptom resolution for at least 24 hours, or if COVID-19 positive, release from isolation

Please not that either (1) or (2), and (3) must be met.

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Academic/Instructional Program Planning for Monticello High School

The academic/instructional program will be in-person learning with assignments while also utilizing our online Learning Management System called Microsoft Teams. The Microsoft Teams program is accessible from any location and device with an internet connection. Devices for accessing this system will be provided for all of our students, and it will be the students’ responsibility to bring the device and charger to school each day for their instruction.

Walkers: Students who walk to school may enter at either the front or rear of the high school building. All high school students must enter through the high school entrances.

Student Drop Off: Students who will be driven to school in a personal vehicle will arrive on the Route 42/Gymnasium/Auditorium side of the building near our Registration entrance. Students must be dropped off in the designated corral. The student will complete the health screening consisting of a temperature check and periodic health screening questionnaires. Answers to the questions that reveal a possible COVID concern or a temperature of 100℉ or higher will result in non-admittance.

Bus Drop Off: When students get off their bus they will enter through the high school entrance only at the front of the high school building.

  • Students will collect a “Grab and Go” breakfast as they enter the building and will eat lunch in the cafeteria or gymnasium depending on space constraints due to cafeteria capacity.
  • Students will move directly from the entrance of the building to their 1st period classroom.

Common Experiences for All Students:

  • Students will remain physically distanced while waiting to enter the building. Upon entry to the building, masks must be worn covering their nose and mouth. Compliance is mandatory. Students will be considered insubordinate if they are intentional in not complying with the appropriate wearing of facial coverings, covering the nose and mouth, and will not be allowed to attend class.
  • Students will complete our health screening consisting of a short series of questions and a temperature check. Answers to the questions that reveal a possible COVID concern or a temperature of 100℉ or higher will result in non-admittance. In the event this happens students will report to the high school isolation room.
  • Students will not be allowed to attend in-person unless they successfully complete (or pass) the daily screening and temperature-taking procedures.
  • Following the health screening and upon entering the building students will pick up their “grab-and-go” breakfast and proceed directly to their assigned classroom. Eating breakfast, or snacks, and drinking is only permitted in their assigned classroom and at times designated by the teacher. The teacher is responsible for making sure the timing for eating and drinking, primarily when students are not up and moving in the classroom.
  • When students arrive at their assigned classroom they will be encouraged to use hand sanitizer and go directly to their assigned desk. Students will have access to disinfecting wipes and may wipe down their desk and chair if they choose to. All surfaces will be disinfected at the end of each school day.
  • Students will transition to all of their classes each period since cohorting would adversely affect course offerings. Eating and drinking is not allowed in the hallway.
  • Students are expected to maintain three (3) feet of physical distancing between students within classrooms and all indoor spaces in the high school, and on school buses. A distance of at least six (6) feet is recommended between students and teachers/staff, when possible. The exception to the three-foot guidance is in band, chorus, general music (when singing or using recorders), dance, physical education and theater, which must maintain the six (6) feet of physical distance between students indoors. Orchestras will move to three (3) feet of physical distance between students, as the use of those instruments does not produce aerosols.
  • Instruction will be provided in-person and teachers will utilize the school’s learning management system (LMS), Microsoft Teams, to also facilitate assignments and instructions.

Student attendance is required and recorded daily. The District believes that classroom participation is related to and affects a student’s performance and grasp of subject matter influencing the final course grade. For purposes of the Attendance Policy (5100), classroom participation means a student is in class and prepared to work. Tardiness consists of not being present in class when the class begins. For students enrolled in high school credit bearing courses, if a student is absent 26 days for a full-year course or 13 days for a half-year course, he or she may be denied credit in that course. In general, physical education classes meet on alternating days thus considered a half-year course for the attendance policy. Missing block classes will count as two absences for the attendance policy.

  • A student will be considered in attendance if the student is:
  • Physically present in the classroom or working under the direction of the classroom teacher during the class scheduled meeting time; or
  • Working in accordance with an approved independent study program; or
  • Receiving approved alternative instruction.
  • A student who is absent from class due to his or her participation in a school-sponsored activity is to arrange with their teacher; a plan to make up work in a timely manner, for missed assignments.
  • Attendance at school-sponsored events will be counted as the equivalent of regular attendance in class.
  • Upon returning to school following a properly excused absence, tardiness or early departure it will be the responsibility of the student to make arrangements to make up missed work, assignments or assessments with his or her teachers in accordance with a specified timeline outlined by the teacher in the course syllabus.

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BOCES Program

Our BOCES partnership remains an important component of our educational program. BOCES is committed to providing relevant and meaningful learning experiences for our students in alignment with program learning objectives and goals.

  • Students will be provided transportation to and from their BOCES program daily.
  • Some BOCES programs require student’s to be fully vaccinated due to the location of their learning experiences. Please be aware of those requirements and contact your child’s guidance counselor, or BOCES instructor, with any questions.

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Specialized Services

Students who require specialized services will receive those services.

  • Students in self-contained special education programs will be in session every school day.
  • Students receiving special services will continue to receive these services (e.g., ENL, speech)

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Shift to Virtual Learning in the Event of School Building Closure Due to COVID-19

COVID-19 rates are being closely monitored, and there may come a time when school buildings must be closed. Instruction will continue during any building closure to ensure continuity of students’ education.

  • In the event school buildings are compelled to close, school will resume virtually.
  • The school day, and corresponding times of classes, will be communicated ahead of time and posted on our website.
  • Students will be engaged in learning activities during class times.
  • Student and staff attendance will be taken daily.

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Student Grading and Report Practices

Grades are used as a tool to monitor learning. Reporting of grades to home strengthens the home-school connection. As such, grades are continuously available through the parent portal in SchoolTool. Students must meet all expectations for the quality and quantity of student work per course requirements. This includes participation in assigned classes each day, turning in required coursework on time, and demonstrating academic honesty and integrity in the completion of assignments and assessments.

  • Our current Board of Education Policy on Grading will be utilized during the 2021-2022 school year.
  • The MCSD Policy 4710 “Grading Systems” is available for reference on our website by clicking on the “Board of Education” link in the top center of the page, then clicking on “Board of Education Policies” on the right side of the page, and then using the “Table of Contents” on the left side of the page to select “Section 4000 – INSTRUCTION” and policy “4710.”
  • The District will issue report cards based on the scheduled cycle (see MCSD Calendar for specific dates). Courses will be graded using a numerical grading system. Weighted numerical grades will factor into student GPAs. Selecting courses as Pass/Fail will not be an option.
  • College in the Classroom (CIC) course grading and reporting requirements will be as per either SUNY Sullivan or Syracuse University (SUPA) direction.
  • If you need assistance with setting up and logging into SchoolTool, please contact your student’s guidance counselor or our secretaries in the main office.
  • If your student needs assistance with technology they may call our Help Desk at 845-794-8840, extension 77777.

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Food Services

Students’ nutritional needs will continue to be met while maintaining social distancing precautions. Breakfast and lunch will continue to be served to students daily. Students may bring their own lunch with them to school. Deliveries of outside food to the school are not allowed. Students may also bring their own water bottles as water fountains will be closed and only water bottle refilling stations will be available.

  • Breakfast will be a “grab and go” upon entry to the building.
  • Lunch will be served to students in the cafeteria. Seating will be available in the cafeteria, and possibly gymnasium, to ensure appropriate physical distancing.
  • Alternate locations will be provided for students with severe food allergies, as needed.
  • Special accommodations pertaining to a student’s required diet will be provided.

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To reduce the chance of spreading infection, the following precautions will be taken in our physical setting.

  • Filtration and ventilation will meet or exceed minimum requirements.
  • Students will be asked to carry a reduced number of materials with them daily. Locker rooms and lockers will not be used until further notice. Students may carry a backpack to transport their materials back and forth to school.
  • Students will be expected to wear sneakers and proper clothing on days they participate in physical education.
  • MCSD will clean and disinfect classrooms and offices once a day.
  • Bathrooms, and other commonly used areas, will be cleaned routinely during the day.
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided and used throughout the school day by both staff and students. Hand sanitizer stations are installed at classroom doors. Disinfecting wipes for work areas and supplies will be provided.

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Extra-Curricular and Athletics

Extra-curricular activities and athletics will be available to students for as long as it is safe to do so.

  • Students will be expected to wear sneakers and proper clothing on days they are permitted to participate in physical education. Locker rooms will not be used.
  • Please stay aware of any changes to the Athletic schedule. These notifications will be communicated through our Athletic Director Mr. Buddenhaggen.
  • Extra-curricular activities will follow the same safety requirements as during the school day. Students will wear masks and remain physically distanced according to the activity requirements while indoors.

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  • Masks, covering the nose and mouth, will be required on school buses at all times.
  • Parents/guardians must screen their student(s) for fever/signs of COVID prior to getting on the bus; sick students, or students with a temperature of 100℉ or greater, must be kept home.
  • Students will be assigned seats for appropriate physical distancing.
  • Members of the same household/family will sit together on the bus.
  • Parents are encouraged to drive their children if possible.
  • Staggered school arrival times and dismissal procedures may be necessary.

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Communication with MHS Administration, Guidance, Faculty, and Staff

It is important to maintain open lines of communication between school and home. Parents should communicate with school professionals whenever there is a question or concern. The high school directory phone number is 845-794-8840 where you can select the department or office you wish to reach.

  • Students and parents/guardians can use the students’ Microsoft Outlook email application to send emails to school professionals. If you start typing the name of the school professional in the “To:” location the system will automatically provide names of school professionals. Please be sure to use the “Subject Line” to put the “Student’s Name” followed by the purpose of the email such as, “Student Question” or “Parent Concern.” School professionals access and respond to their email regularly and are expected to respond back to students and parents within a reasonable amount of time, usually within two workdays.
  • Directions on how to e-mail high school administration, guidance, faculty, and staff can be found on our high school website, under “High School Links”, and click on “About Monticello High School.”
  • Contact information for our guidance department personnel may be found on our high school website, under “High School Links,” and click on “Guidance Department.”
  • If students and/or parents/guardians have questions specific to a course of study the first point of contact is the student’s teacher as listed on their schedule.
  • If students and/or parents/guardians have a question regarding the academic program or student services, they should contact their assigned guidance counselor.
  • If students and/or parents/guardians have a question or concern regarding safety or have not been able to resolve a concern with their teacher or guidance counselor then contact your corresponding cohort AP.
  • Mrs. Anna-Marissa Estep: 9th and 11th graders
  • Mrs. Robyn Boardman: 10th and 12th graders
  • If students and/or parents/guardians are unable to resolve a question or concern with their teacher, guidance, or assistant principal then they should contact High School Principal Stephen Wilder.
  • Informational announcements will be communicated via our SchoolMessenger application, the ParentSquare application, and our high school website.

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Code of Conduct Connections w/ COVID-19 Requirements

Our focus is on working with students and families to build understanding around the purpose of the rules and requirements within the building and district. After a violation of the Code of Conduct the student will be provided with an opportunity to learn using restorative practices and appropriate consequences. The District Code of Conduct provides guidance on the escalation of consequences relative to the severity of the violation while ensuring due process.

  • Students will not be allowed to attend in-person unless they successfully complete (or pass) the daily screening and temperature-taking procedures.
  • Students will be considered insubordinate if they are intentional in not complying with the appropriate wearing of facial coverings, covering the nose and mouth, and will not be allowed to attend in-person.
  • Students who are intentional in behaving in a manner that puts others at risk, or might reasonably cause another individual to fear of being at risk for contracting COVID -19, such as intentionally coughing on or toward another person, spitting on or toward another person, etc., may receive discipline in alignment with the definition of Reckless Endangerment which will result in a 5-day suspension and referral for a 3214 Superintendent’s hearing.
  • Headwear is not allowed to be worn in the building unless for documented and approved medical or religious purposes.
  • The MCSD Code of Conduct is available for reference on our website by clicking on the “Board of Education” link in the top center of the page, then clicking on “Board of Education Policies” on the right side of the page, and then using the “Table of Contents” on the left side of the page to select “Section 5000 – STUDENTS” and policy “5300.”

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