Massena Central super gives update on free meals, new testing requirements, sports
BY ANDY GARDNER
North Country This Week
MASSENA -- Superintendent Pat Brady updated the Board of Education on new pandemic precautions during their October meeting, and told them student meals are free for the rest of the year.
Brady updated the board as the school is now settling in to hybrid classes for all students, kindergarten through 12th grade.“We had originally said it would be Oct. 13 … we were able to phase everyone back in as the cases went down,” Brady said. “Tonight was the first night we’ve had an athletic contest on these grounds in a long time, and they won.”
The state now requires anyone with COVID-19 symptoms to be tested for the illness within 48 hours.
“If they find there’s an alternative diagnosis … a note from the doctor will suffice. Otherwise, they need to do tests, and get a note from a doctor, to be cleared on a negative test,” Brady said. “We have to present that to the local Public Health Department, and they’d have to look at possibly doing contact tracing.”
“If someone is sick with COVID symptoms, they need to go a doctor immediately,” Brady said.
He also told the board that students are no longer required to report contacts with someone who has possible COVID symptoms. They are still required to report any contact with a confirmed positive coronavirus infection.
He said the change is “common sense.”
“Basically the COVID symptoms are almost anything that a common cold would have -- headache, runny nose -- any number of things,” he said.
The superintendent added that the Department of Agriculture has extended food service waivers through the end of the school year.
“Any child can receive a free meal. They don’t have to be free or reduced,” Brady said.
At the end of the discussion, Board of Education Trustee Loren Fountain applauded their school nurses.
“Shoutout to our school nurses who are on the front line of these new protocols, and parents aren’t always nice to them, even though they didn’t come up with these new protocols,” he said.
“I’d echo that,” Brady said.