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Important Information on Novel Coronavirus 19

To:       LaFayette CSD School Community
From:  Jeremy Belfield, Superintendent of Schools
Re:      Important Information on Novel Coronavirus 19 (2019-nCoV)
Date:   March 3, 2020

Dear LaFayette CSD School Community:
As you may know, New York State recently confirmed its first two cases of the novel coronavirus 19 (2019-nCoV). While there are no reported cases in the Central NY area at this time, I know that many of you are concerned about the potential spread of this disease and how this could impact schools in our district.

The LaFayette Central School District will continue to follow the recommendations outlined by the Centers for Disease Control, Onondaga County Health Department, and the New York State Department of Health. All three organizations are closely monitoring the situation and will provide updates as the situation warrants.

In addition, Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES and area superintendents have been working together on a safety plan to address the situation as it continues to evolve. In the event that the virus spreads to local schools, the district will consult with the health department and communicate with parents on the steps being taken to prevent the spread of this virus.

The district currently has extensive cleaning measures in place to combat cold and flu-like viruses. These measures have been quite effective in preventing illness outbreaks in our buildings, and we will continue to review and follow these procedures in the months ahead.
As a reminder, we are still in the midst of our regular cold and flu season, and it is important that we continue to follow recommendations to minimize the spread of all respiratory viruses, including 2019-nCoV. Please make sure you share the following reminders from the NYS Department of Health with your family members:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Here is some additional information from the CDC on proper handwashing procedures:
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Individuals who are experiencing symptoms and may have traveled to areas of concern or have been in contact with somebody who has traveled to these areas should call ahead to their healthcare provider before presenting for treatment.
  • New Yorkers can call the State hotline at 1-888-364-3065, where experts can answer questions regarding the novel coronavirus. In addition, the Department has a dedicated website (link below) which was created as a resource with updated information for New Yorkers.
If you have been following news from countries where the virus is widespread, such as Japan, schools have closed for an extended period to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus. Out of an abundance of caution, the Centers for Disease Control has suggested that schools in the United States consider plans for alternative instruction in the event of an extended closure due to the spread of disease. Again, there are no immediate plans to close schools due to the spread of the coronavirus, however, we are simply looking to be prepared and think about alternative ways to educate LaFayette students if we must.
We ask that you respond to this brief survey to help the district gather information related to internet access and availability of technology in your home:

Thank you for encouraging healthy habits with your children at home. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at or 315-677-9728 (office) or 315-529-9550 (cell).
Jeremy Belfield
Superintendent of Schools
LaFayette Central School District
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