GHENT–Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday, April 6 that all “NYS on Pause” functions will be extended for an additional two weeks amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The governor also directed schools and nonessential businesses to stay closed for an additional two weeks through April 29. The state will re-evaluate after this additional two-week period.
In March the six school districts in Columbia County announced they would be closed until early April and then announced the schools and school grounds where closed until April 15. That date affected spring break, which was supposed to start on April 10. The state also canceled the 3rd-to-8th-grade assessment tests.
According to a press release from the Ichabod Crane School District, the state Board of Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa announced on Monday that June 2020 Regents Examinations are canceled. The email from the school district says, “They will issue further guidance on how this impacts high school students tomorrow (April 7).”
“During this time, our school district will continue providing remote learning, meals for students and childcare for essential workers every weekday,” says the release from Ichabod.
The Hudson City School District Superintendent Maria Suttmeier said in a letter on the district website, that the district will have to pay close attention to language this new executive order from the governor “to determine if there are any additional requirements that come along with this extension. The governor was more optimistic regarding overall trend lines but continued to express a sense of urgency and the need for local governments to do a better job at enforcing social distancing mandates.”
Governor Cuomo also announced in his address on Monday that the state is increasing the maximum fine for violations of the state’s social distancing protocol from $500 to $1,000 to help address the lack of adherence to social distancing protocols. The governor reminded localities that they have the authority to enforce the protocols.
“This virus is an enemy that the entire country underestimated from day one and we have paid the price dearly,” Governor Cuomo said in a press release. “While the numbers look like they may be turning, now is not the time to be lax with social distancing–that would be a mistake and we all have a responsibility and a societal role in this. As I said from day one, I am not going to choose between public health and economic activity, and to that end I am extending all NYS on Pause functions for an additional two weeks. People are dying and our health care workers are exposing themselves to tremendous risk every day. If we can’t convince you to show discipline for yourself in terms of social distancing, show discipline for other people.”