New York State School Boards Association
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Q&A on procedures for addressing allegations of sexual harassment

On Board Online • June 8, 2020

By Kate Gaffney
Senior Staff Counsel

The questions and answers below provide an overview of the regulatory process for reporting, investigating and making determinations regarding allegations of sexual harassment.

Generally, districts have an overall responsibility to address allegations of sexual harassment in accordance with the final Title IX regulations going into effect on Aug. 14, 2020.

Maslow before Bloom: Love becomes educational strategy during COVID-19

On Board Online • May 18, 2020

By Jeffrey S. Handelman
Director of Human Resources and Operations

With schools physically shuttered but still responsible for educating students for the remainder of the year, it is essential that students feel valued and connected to their schools, according to the authors of books on school culture. You might call it the strategy of love.

On Twitter, educators across the nation have been encouraging each other to show love for students in postings using the hashtag #MaslowBeforeBloom.

My message to the Class of 2020

On Board Online • May 18, 2020

Fred Langstaff
NYSSBA President

While we often say that hindsight is 20/20, we do not need to wait for the passage of time to know that this year's graduating seniors are living in historic times.

With schools closed through the end of the academic year, seniors and their families have had to accept the fact that many cherished, once-in-a-lifetime events - the senior prom, special ceremonies, and, yes, commencement - cannot take place as usual in the midst of a global public health crisis.

Digital divide = Equity issue

On Board Online • May 18, 2020

By Paul Heiser
Senior Research Analyst

As is the case in many school districts, not all students in the Peru school district have access to the internet at home. So when the governor ordered schools across the state to close because of the coronavirus pandemic, offcials in the Clinton County school district had to figure out a way to make sure all students had broadband access.

"We used our essential staff and made calls to the home of every student to see what their technology capabilities were in their homes," Peru Superintendent Thomas Palmer told On Board.

Principal on parents: 'They've all been working so hard'

On Board Online • May 18, 2020

By Angela Marshall

How are special education students experiencing the school shutdown? While every student is different, consider Jason (not his real name), a 19-year-old student from Long Island.

Since the age of 5, he has attended the Carman Road School in Massapequa, which serves students with multiple disabilities including students with physical and developmental impairments as well as students with autism spectrum disorders, aged 5 to 21.

Educators respond to school closures with creative forms of connection

On Board Online • April 27, 2020

By Michael Goot
Special Correspondent

Whether it is showing off funny dance moves on TikTok, tweeting out inspirational thoughts of the day or posting wacky videos on YouTube, school districts across the state are finding innovative ways to keep students engaged and communities intact during the COVID-19 shutdown.

Watervliet school board member Amanda Cavanaugh came up with a T-shirt fundraiser as a way for her Albany County district to build school spirit and support the local economy.

The many heroes among us

On Board Online • April 27, 2020

Robert S. Schneider
NYSSBA Executive Director

On April 6, Port Washington resident Madalyn Connors became the first person on Long Island to donate convalescent plasma, a treatment being used to help coronavirus patients recover quickly.

Danielle Bennett, a behavioral support specialists for Madison-Oneida BOCES, has created a five-part YouTube series called Positive Behavior and Solutions for Families.

And JP Kaminski, a teacher in the Dobbs Ferry School District, is making much-needed personal protective equipment in his basement.

The pandemic has shown us who we are

On Board Online • April 27, 2020

By Robert Mackey
Superintendent, Unadilla Valley Central School District

As the COVID-19 virus spread across the nation last month, educators rose to the challenge. In my district, teachers spent an entire weekend at school, meeting in teams to prepare for a school closure that hadn't even been announced.

The last few weeks have been exhausting for educators, educational leaders, parents, students, business owners, community members and especially health care workers. Politicians have displayed painfully obvious differences in their approaches to this crisis, causing mixed reactions in people. Some Americans are fearful and anxious while others are ignoring social distancing rules.

Supporting teachers new to online education

On Board Online • April 27, 2020

Editor's Note: Below is an edited transcript of the Steve Barkley Ponders Out Loud podcast in which Barkley, an educational consultant with PLS 3rd Learning, interviews online teaching expert Rhianna Rogers, associate professor at SUNY Empire State College. The college offers 110 online degree programs.

Q: I'm excited on our podcast today to be joined by Dr. Rhianna Rogers who has prepared quite a bit of material to support teachers working online for the first time.

A: I'm happy to be here. It was a crash course for me when I first came to the college, going from being a brick and mortar professor in Florida into this world of online learning. So for all of you out there, I know how you feel. I actually did it myself.

Letter from a home office A 'closed' school district is a busy place

On Board Online • April 6, 2020

By Laura Belfiore
Communications Specialist Peekskill City School District

On Friday, March 13, many of us left our school district offices not knowing when we'd return. Copiers were in high demand as teachers and principals began preparing packets of work for students. When the buildings closed, some staff went to Staples to scan and copy.

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