Nassau schools prepare for distance learning

Is it realistic for students to learn from home? The hot-topic issue was addressed on Wednesday by Nassau County government, health and school officials as the number of positive novel coronavirus cases climbed to at least 25 in the county.

"This is not to cause panic—this is to contain the virus," Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said.

Under new state policy, any school where a student or faculty member tests positive for the virus must immediately close for 24 hours to allow for time to assess the situation and see if the closure should be extended.

Officials explained that making that determination involves a collaborative effort between the school as well as the Nassau and state Departments of Health.

The Plainview-Old Bethpage District has been closed for two days after a staff member contracted the virus.

The Glen Cove and Locust Valley school districts also closed for 24 hours after contract employees in transportation tested positive.

Districts including Freeport and Rockville Centre have plans in place in the event of an extended closure including tele-teaching.

"The school districts in Nassau County understand the dimensions of the problem, and we're very confident the children, although it may not be exactly the education you can expect, will have some degree of continuity with their families in their homes," said Dr. William Johnson, superintendent of the Rockville Centre School District.

Administrators also said that it is important to take childcare and nutrition into consideration.


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