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GCCSD under NYS Micro-Cluster Yellow Zone Designation, must begin testing students and staff


Due to high infection rates in our area, Gates Chili now falls under a yellow zone designation under the NYS Micro-Cluster Strategy.


Cases of COVID-19 have grown sharply in our region this week, largely due to gatherings outside of schools, which put students at risk of infection. Today, Governor Cuomo again discussed the infection rate in Monroe County, and the concern of “micro-clusters” with higher-than-average COVID-19 cases. 


Following the governor’s recent Executive Order 202.68, Gates Chili is one many districts in Monroe County, that must begin to randomly test 20% of all hybrid in-person staff and students in order to continue in-person instruction. We estimate the district will need to test approximately 500 staff and students each week while we are under the yellow zone designation. The requirements are complex, but we want to share some key points with families in the document attached.


The state is deploying rapid-testing kits to specific counties that are seeing an uptick or cluster in COVID-19 cases. We are working closely with the Monroe County Department of Public Health to create a procedure for testing and reporting to the state. We will communicate this plan, as well as the groups for testing as soon as possible.


We have shared for many months now that in order to protect our community’s health and the integrity of our instructional programs, we must all adhere to strict health protocols we have in place. Your actions outside of school significantly impact every single person on our campuses. In our school buildings, our students are doing a great job wearing masks and social distancing. We continue to urge students and families to help control the spread of COVID-19 by adhering to the following guidelines at all times:


  • When interacting with individuals who are not part of your household, wear a mask and stay six feet apart
  • Avoid large gatherings, especially inside a home or other enclosure
  • If you have any symptoms of COVID-19, stay home and consult with your health care provider

If you have ongoing questions about the Coronavirus, please call the Monroe County COVID-19 Hotline at 753-5555 or email them at


We thank you for your ongoing cooperation and patience as we work to comply with these newest requirements. We hold the power to manage this. Let’s put #GCcares into action and get through this together, while apart.


NYS Micro-Cluster Strategy Explained