CSEA-represented educational support professionals working in our schools understandably have a lot of questions and concerns about safely returning to schools this fall, while the threat of COVID-19 infection remains for the entire school community.
Recognizing the need to provide guidance and assistance for union members working in our public schools and other educational settings, CSEA’s SAFE@SCHOOL initiative aims to be a one-stop shop for resources devoted to safely reopening schools in the midst of this global pandemic, in addition to other school safety resources.
This initiative is a collaboration between the staff professionals in CSEA’s Occupational Safety and Health Department, the members of our union’s statewide Safety & Health and Schools Committees.
A MESSAGE FROM OUR PRESIDENT:
As plans are being made to reopen our school districts in the fall, we will all face a very difficult challenge in safely reopening. School districts have an ethical and legal obligation to reopen safely. School employees, students, their families and the rest of us are all at risk if this isn’t done responsibly. The task to safely reopen is extraordinary and will require each and every one of us to be vigilant so we all remain safe and healthy.
We’re all in this together. We must work closely together with our brothers and sisters in the teacher’s union, as well as parents and students to ensure we do not spread COVID-19. School districts must engage community stakeholders in the development of these plans. We must force these conversations if your district has not involved your union’s leadership team in the development of these vital safety plans.
Now is the time to review and discuss your school’s reopening plan. You should tap into CSEA’s staff resources as needed, including our labor relations staff and the professionals in our Occupational Safety and Health Department, to help identify deficiencies and make recommendations on best practices.
I wish you a safe and healthy school year ahead. Together, we will meet and overcome these challenges.
Mary E. Sullivan
- Access CSEA’s ON-DEMAND school safety webinars
- State Education Dept. guidance on reopening schools
- Fact sheets on multiple safety topics (not just COVID-related)
- CSEA’s Respiratory Protection Toolkit
- CSEA OSH presentation on NYSED Reopening Guidance
- Downloadable poster: Cleaning After COVID
- COVID-19 Ventilation Recommendations
- CDC Link: COVID-19 symptoms
- WHO Link: How to properly wear a mask
- Search for your school’s reopening plan
- What to ask for in reopening plans
- Link: State Education Department website on reopening
- Summary of SED guidance protocols
- SED Reopening Guidance: Executive Summary
- Evaluation Form of Employer’s PPE Program
- CSEA’s PPE Hazard Assessment and Certification Form
- Flier on Hazard Control & PPE – how to use the hierarchy of controls
- NYS DOH Link: Quarantine & Isolation guidance
- NYS Link: List of NYS current travel ban areas
CSEA has staff professionals available to help identify deficiencies and make recommendations on best practices.
Your CSEA Labor Relations Specialist (LRS) is always your best first point of contact to identify your needs or concerns and put you in touch with the appropriate staff from our Occupational Safety and Health Department.
Get in touch with your LRS through your union officers or by contacting your nearest CSEA Region Office.
General Resources on COVID-19
CSEA’s Occupational Safety & Health Department has compiled very helpful information dealing with COVID-19 for union members working in all industries, not just schools, and we encourage you to visit our Coronavirus Information Page.