Message from NYSDOH Commissioner Zucker - June 28, 2020

Dear Chappaqua Central School District Community,

The safety of our students and our entire school community continues to be our highest priority. This evening, it was requested that I share with you correspondence from Dr. Zucker, Commissioner of the New York State Department of Health.

Please be assured that we are continuing to work closely with local and state officials to support their efforts to prevent further spread of COVID-19 in our area.

Sincerely,

Christine Ackerman, PhD
Superintendent of Schools


NYSDOH

June 28, 2020

Dear Students, Families, and Guests:

High school graduation is a uniquely special time in young people's lives, the final achievement in a journey that began in kindergarten, and something they have been looking forward to for years. Unfortunately for our graduating seniors and their families, this year is different. A global pandemic is disrupting our lives in ways we could never have imagined, and we all must work together to contain it.

The New York State Department of Health is working with the Westchester County Department of Health to investigate reports of potential COVID-19 exposure at Horace Greeley High School's graduation ceremony, held on June 20 at Chappaqua Train Station in Westchester County, as well as at several parties later that day and the next day.

A student who attended the ceremony has since tested positive for COVID-19. Subsequently, four more individuals who attended the ceremony and had contact with the original positive case have also since tested positive. All individuals who have tested positive have been contacted by public health professionals, and all are currently adhering to appropriate isolation measures. In addition to the graduation ceremony, the student participated in a non-school related "Field Night" event on June 20, which was also attended by juniors and seniors and students from surrounding school districts.

We are working with officials from Horace Greeley to identify everyone who attended the graduation ceremony and any subsequent gatherings where they may have been exposed. The New York State Contact Tracing Program will be reaching out to identified individuals. If you or someone in your household attended the graduation ceremony, Field Night event, or any graduation parties since, you are subject to precautionary quarantine for 14 days from the end of the graduation weekend, which is Sunday July 5th. We also encourage anyone who attended any of these events to contact their healthcare provider and be tested for COVID-19.

Precautionary quarantine means that you are to remain in your household isolated from others and cannot go to work. For information about testing, please contact the your local healthcare provider, or visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/covid-19-testing.

While we have made great strides in containing the COVID-19 pandemic, it is still very active throughout the country, including in New York State. Businesses throughout the state are reopening and people are once again seeing friends and loved ones, but we must continue to be diligent. Practice social distancing, wear a mask in public, and wash your hands frequently.

Graduations are happening throughout the state, and I offer my congratulations to the class of 2020. As you celebrate, please exercise caution. Stay safe, stay healthy.

Sincerely,

Howard Zucker, M.D., J.D.
Commissioner of Health