August Reopening Update

Dear Queensbury families,

I hope you are enjoying your summer. It has been a busy one for QUFSD with our summer programming and planning for the 2021-22 school year.

A new school year brings excitement, but this year, we know there is anticipation surrounding what school will look like.

On Thursday, the New York State Department of Education (NYSED) shared a summary guidance document to help school districts prepare for reopening. The document was based on Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

While many questions remain, at this time, our district anticipates schools will reopen at full capacity for in-person learning with some restrictions and modifications. Our goal remains to keep students in school full-time.

We will plan to communicate with staff and families as we prepare for a return to school on Sept. 9. Our current plans for reopening are based on a tiered mitigation approach, which includes 3-feet of physical distancing wherever and whenever feasible, cleaning and hygiene protocols, screening, and all students and employees wearing masks indoors per the current CDC guidelines.

Please note, there are several factors the district will be considering when it comes to decision-making:

  • The percentage of vaccinated students and staff;
  • Eligibility for vaccination for students ages 5-11;
  • The level of transmission in the county – Warren County has been listed in the “high” transmission area for several weeks;
  • Universal mask wearing will reduce the number of required quarantines if exposed to a positive case.

    Our district will be working collaboratively with the other schools throughout the region, as well as our school medical director and Warren County Public Health to keep our students and staff healthy, safe and in school.

As of this writing, these are the procedures we will be following:

Physical distancing

  • When students and staff are in the building, K-12:
    • Individuals will be masked and 3-feet apart
    • Frequent, alternate row, mask breaks when students are seated (this means mask breaks will take place at 6-feet apart)
    • Movement = masks
    • When students and staff are outside masks are not required (but optional)
    • Breakfast and lunch will be eaten at 3-feet apart; students will be asked to re-mask when they are done eating


To provide safe transportation for students, as per the federal mandate, the district will be requiring that masks be worn on buses at all times. Bus windows and hatches will be cracked at all times to provide maximum ventilation and airflow. All individuals must abide by the following guidelines when riding the bus:

  • To minimize additional student contact, students need to be transported to and from the same address five days/week (there will be no special arrangements such as going home instead of day care on a particular day or getting on the bus at a friend’s house, etc.)
    • Similarly, schedules that vary by day (where a student gets dropped off or picked up at different locations during the week) will not be possible.
      Parents/guardians will be responsible for transportation to and from other locations.
  • Two students per seat; siblings will be required to sit together.
  • Students will be required to sit in the same assigned seat every day.


JV & Varsity sports start on Aug. 23, and modified sports start on Sept. 7. More information will be shared by coaches as we approach the start of the season. Please make sure your student has been signed up for sports via Family ID. If you need more info please contact the athletics office.


At this time, vaccinations are not mandatory for employees or students. Vaccination is currently the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. If any student or staff member needs help accessing a vaccine, please reach out to your building principal and we can help you to make arrangements.

*As of Sept. 2,  all school personnel including bus drivers and contracted bus drivers must either submit proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 or submit to weekly testing for the virus. No one is required to be vaccinated under the determination. However, being fully vaccinated is specified as a way to be exempted from the testing requirement. More information is forthcoming. 

Social-emotional wellness

In addition to our focus on health and safety, the district will continue to focus on the wellness and social-emotional needs of our students and staff. We understand the impact COVID-19 has had on our students and their families, our staff, and our community.

With that in mind, we are very pleased to announce that we have hired Raychel Marcil for a new position here at Queensbury, as the district’s Director of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) and School Development.

As the Director of SEL and School Development, Raychel will be responsible for establishing protocols and procedures collaboratively, to ensure the effective implementation of a systemic SEL program to best support the needs of all students, faculty, and staff. Please join me in welcoming Raychel to the district!

More updates forthcoming

As we have said many times before, thank you for your patience and cooperation during this ever-evolving situation. Please keep in mind, as we await further guidance, our district’s situation can change based on a number of factors.

Together we can get back to school and be Spartan SAFE.

If you have any further questions please complete the linked form for the appropriate building and an administrator will reach out to you.


Kyle L. Gannon