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Excerpts From Executive Orders Issued by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

September 9, 2020 (COVID-19 School Report Cards)

Subdivision 1 of section 579 of the Public Health Law is modified to the extent necessary to require immediate reporting (not more than 3 hours) of results of COVID-19 and influenza testing by additional clinical laboratories, including those operated by a licensed physician, osteopath, dentist, midwife, nurse practitioner or optometrist who is authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or Department of Health to administer a point of care COVID-19 test and registered with the Department of Health as a physician office laboratory, in accordance with section 576-c of the Public Health Law and Section 58-1.14 of Title 10 of the NYCRR; provided further as it relates to COVID-19 testing, containing information pertaining to attendance and employment in school as required by the below directives.

Every licensed professional authorized by the Department of Health Physician Office Laboratory Evaluation Program to administer a test for COVID-19 or influenza, whether alone or in conjunction with any other test, shall report such results immediately (not more than 3 hours) to the Department of Health through the Electronic Clinical Laboratory Reporting System (ECLRS) when a result is received.

Provided further that every professional authorized to administer a test for COVID-19 shall not take such sample or administer such test without inquiring, if such individual attends school, and if so, as to where such individual attends school and to report such data to ECLRS; and as to place of employment, and whether the individual works or volunteers in an elementary, secondary school, or post-secondary school, and if so, to report such data to ECLRS. Additionally, every professional authorized to administer a test for COVID-19 shall not take such sample or administer such test without inquiring as to the individual’s local address, if such address differs from the individual’s permanent address, and such local address must be reported to ECLRS.

Every licensed laboratory in the state of New York shall require that, prior to processing any specimen for a COVID-19 test, alone or in conjunction with a test for any other communicable disease, information related to school of attendance, or place of employment or volunteer work for any adult, be transmitted to such laboratory along with such sample. Such information must be reported to the State Department of Health via ECLRS.

Every local health department in the state of New York shall report to the Department of Health, on a daily basis, in a form and manner to be determined by the Department, all COVID-19 testing and diagnoses for any individual who is a student, teacher, and any other individual who is a school employee or volunteer, for both higher and lower education institutions and districts. Such daily report shall include any other data elements as the Commissioner of Health determines to be appropriate to track outbreaks of COVID-19 within higher and lower education institutions, schools and school districts.

Every school and school district shall report to the Department of Health, on a daily basis, in a form and manner to be determined by the Department, all COVID-19 testing and diagnoses among students, teaching staff, and any other employees or volunteers. Such daily report shall include any other data elements as the Commissioner of Health determines to be appropriate to track outbreaks of COVID-19 within such schools and school districts.

Any directive, modification or suspension heretofore issued to authorize individuals to administer or process any COVID-19 test shall apply to any FDA approved method to test for COVID-19 in conjunction with any other communicable disease.

 

September 4, 2020 (Ineligibility for Paid Sick Leave Under Certain Circumstances; Requirement for School Districts to Maintain Plans for Meals And Emergency Child Care)

Subdivision 4 of section 1 of chapter 25 of the laws of 2020 is modified to the extent necessary to provide that in addition to any travel to a country for which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a level two or three travel health notice, an employee shall not be eligible for paid sick leave benefits or any other paid benefits pursuant to this chapter if such employee voluntarily travels to a state with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents, or higher than a 10% test positivity rate, over a seven day rolling average, and which the commissioner of the department of health has designated as meeting these conditions as outlined in the advisory issued pursuant to Executive Order 205, and the employee did not begin travel to such state before the commissioner of the department of health designated such state, and the travel was not taken as part of the employee’s employment or at the direction of the employee’s employer;

...

The directive contained in Executive Order 202.45, as extended, requiring closure of all schools statewide to in-person instruction, is hereby modified only insofar as to authorize schools statewide to be open for instruction, effective September 1, 2020, subject to adherence to Department of Health issued guidance and directives, and provided further that school districts must continue plans to ensure the availability of meals, and the availability of child care for health care and emergency response workers, for any school district that is conducting its operations remotely and provided further that for any district which closes to in-person instruction, a contingency plan to immediately provide such services must be maintained

 

June 10 (Partial Authorization for Second Votes on School Budgets)

Subdivision 4 of section 2022 of the education law and subdivision 3 of section 2007 of the education law to the extent necessary to provide that, in the event that the original budget proposed by a school district is not approved by the voters at an election held on June 9, 2020, pursuant to Executive Order 202.26, any resubmission to the voters of the original or revised budget shall be conducted at a date and by a process determined by and subject to a future Executive Order, provided, however, such revote shall not occur prior to July 9, 2020.

 

June 7 (Extension of School Budget Votes and Board Elections to June 16; Suspension of APPR)

Sections 2018-a and 2018-b of the Education Law, to the extent necessary to allow any absentee ballot for an election held on June 9, 2020 and received by mail in the office of the clerk of the school district or designee of the trustees or school board not later than June 16, 2020 to be canvassed for such election.  No ballots for such election shall be accepted by the clerk of the school district or designee of the trustees or school board after 5 p.m. on June 9, 2020 except those received by mail in accordance with this provision. Any receptacle used for hand delivery of absentee ballots in such election shall be closed and removed at 5 p.m. on June 9, 2020; The ballots therein shall remain unopened pending delivery of mailed ballots, and shall be removed and canvassed after 5 p.m. on June 16, 2020;

Section 3012(d) of the Education Law and Subpart 30-3 of Title 8 of the NYCRR, to the extent necessary to exempt school districts from completing annual professional performance reviews of classroom teachers and building principals during the 2019-20 school year without withholding any apportionment of funds for the general support of public schools for which a school district is otherwise entitled; and

Sections §§2509, 2573, 3012 and 3014 of the Education Law, to the extent necessary to allow a board of education or the trustees of a common school district, only upon specific agreement, to appoint on tenure those classroom teachers and building principals recommended by the superintendent of schools who are in the final year of the probationary period, have received the previous requisite annual professional performance review ratings pursuant to §3012-d of the education law and would have been in their discretion qualified for appointment on tenure based upon past performance, notwithstanding that their annual professional performance review had not been completed and they had not received the necessary effectiveness rating for the 2019-20 school year, or to allow such board of education or trustees of a common school district to extend such determination for an additional year.

 

June 7 (High School Graduation Cermonies)

The Governor announced that socially distanced outdoor graduation cermonies of up to 150 people will be permitted starting June 26. No Executive Order or other guidance for these events has been issued as of 6/10/2020.

On June 4, the Governor announced gthat drive-through and drive-in graduation ceremonies  would be allowed. The Department of Health issued interim guidance for the conduct of such events.

 

June 5 (Authorization to Provide In Person Summer Special Education Services)

Notwithstanding any prior Executive Order to the contrary, special education services and instruction required under Federal, state or local laws, rules, or regulations, may be provided in person for the summer term in school districts. Any district providing such services in person must follow State and Federal guidance.

Interim guidance from the Department of Health (June 8, 2020)

 

May 7 (Closure of Schools Through the End of the Year)

Executive Order 202.18, which extended the directive contained in Executive Orders 202.14 and 202.4 as amended by Executive Order 202.11 related to the closure of schools statewide, is hereby continued to provide that all schools shall remain closed through the remainder of the school year. School districts must continue plans for alternative instructional options, distribution and availability of meals, and child care, with an emphasis on serving children of essential workers. 

 

May 1, 2020 (School Budget Votes and Board Elections)  

Sections 1804, 1906, 2002, 2022, 2601-a of the Education Law, to the extent necessary, to provide that the annual district meeting and election of every common, union free, central and central high school district and the annual meeting of every city school district in a city having a population of less than one hundred twenty-five thousand inhabitants was scheduled to be held on the third Tuesday of May, two thousand twenty is hereby adjourned and rescheduled until June 9, 2020, which shall be deemed the statewide uniform voting day;

Sections 2003, 2004, 2022 2601-a of the Education Law, to the extent necessary to provide that trustees or boards of education of each such school district shall provide notice of such adjourned meeting to the qualified voters in the manner prescribed for notice of the annual meeting except that the number of required publications shall be two and the first publication must be no later than 28 days before the election, and such notice shall provide for an adjourned budget hearing. Such adjourned meeting shall take place remotely, and qualified voters shall vote in such adjourned election only by absentee ballot, to be provided to all qualified voters by each school district. Each district shall send out postcard notice which details the date of the election, date of budget hearing, definition of qualified voter, and an absentee ballot, The adjourned district meeting or district meeting and election shall be deemed the annual meeting or annual meeting and election of the district for all purposes;

Sections 1608 and  1716 of the Education Law to the extent necessary to allow report cards to be submitted to the State Education Department no later than 18 days prior to the date of the adjourned meeting, and the department shall make its compilation available electronically at the latest on June 2, 2020, seven days prior to the adjourned meeting date;

Sections 2018-a and 2018-b of the Education Law are temporarily suspended and hereby modified to provide that due to the prevalence and community spread of COVID-19, that the potential for contraction of the COVID-19 virus shall be deemed temporary illness;

Sections 2018-a and 2018-b of the Education Law are hereby modified, only for the purpose of any election held on or before June 30, 2020, to require every eligible voter be sent an absentee ballot with a postage paid return envelope;

Sections 2018, 2032, and 2608 of the Education Law to the extent necessary to allow candidates be listed on ballots alphabetically, and that ballots for small city school districts shall be set 30 days before the election;

Sections 2018 and 2608 of the Education Law to the extent necessary to eliminate any minimum threshold of signatures required, provided, however, an individual must meet any other requirements necessary to be placed on the ballot, including any applicable residency and age requirements;

Section 260 of the Education Law to the extent necessary to authorize public libraries established and supported by a school district to re-notice an election noticed pursuant to this section. Such election and/or budget vote shall be conducted via absentee ballot in conjunction with the school district’s rescheduled absentee ballot process or independently using the guidelines created for the school district’s absentee ballot process. Such a vote may be managed by the school district or the library, at the library’s request. Furthermore, the same provisions that are made for a school board trustee’s petition shall apply to a library board trustee’s petition;

Section 259 (1) of the Education Law to the extent necessary to give applicable school ballot funding propositions for public or association libraries to take place on the absentee ballot used to administer the school district’s budget vote;

Sections 259 and 260 of the Education Law are hereby modified for any library election held on or before July 1, 2020, to eliminate any requirement for an application to access an absentee ballot, and each such eligible voter shall be mailed an absentee ballot with a postage paid return envelope.

 

April 16, 2020 (Closure of Schools Through May 15)

Executive Order 202.14, which extended the directive contained in Executive Order 202.4 as amended by Executive Order 202.11 related to the closure of schools statewide is hereby continued to provide that all schools shall remain closed through May 15, 2020, at which time the continued closure shall be re-evaluated. No school shall be subject to a diminution in school aid due to failure to meet the 180 day in session requirement as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, provided their closure does not extend beyond the term set forth herein. School districts must continue plans for alternative instructional options, distribution and availability of meals, and child care, with an emphasis on serving children of essential workers, and continue to first use any vacation or snow days remaining.

 

April 10, 2020 (Nonpublic School Transportation Requests, Waiver of  Public Hearing Requirements)

I, Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor of the State of New York, by virtue of the authority vested in me by Section 29-a of Article 2-B of the Executive Law .... hereby temporarily suspend or modify, for the period from the date of this Executive Order through May 9, 2020 the following: ... Section 3635 of the Education law, to the extent necessary to delay the April 1 requirement that parents must file transportation requests with their school district in order to obtain transportation for their children for the following school year;

Any local official, state official or local government or school, which, by virtue of any law has a public hearing scheduled or otherwise required to take place in April or May of 2020 shall be postponed, until June 1, 2020, without prejudice, however such hearing may continue if the convening public body or official is able to hold the public hearing remotely, through use of telephone conference, video conference, and/or other similar service.

 

April 7, 2020 (Closure of Schools Through April 29)

The directive contained in Executive Order 202.4 as amended by Executive Order 202.11 related to the closure of schools statewide shall hereafter be modified to provide that all schools shall remain closed through April 29, 2020, at which time the continued closure shall be re-evaluated. No school shall be subject to a diminution in school aid due to failure to meet the 180 day in session requirement as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, provided their closure does not extend beyond the term set forth herein. School districts must continue plans for alternative instructional options, distribution and availability of meals, and child care, with an emphasis on serving children of essential workers, and continue to first use any vacation or snow days remaining.

Note:  Prior school closure orders would have had schools reopening on a Wednesday. This order states that "...schools shall remain closed through April 29 [emphasis added]."  Accordingly, unless the closure is extended, schools will be closed on Wednesday, April 29 and would reopen on Thursday April 30.

 

March 30, 2020 (Postponement of School Votes)

Circulation, filing, and collection of any designating petitions, or independent nominating petitions for any office that would otherwise be circulated or filed pursuant to the Election Law, Education Law or any other consolidated law for any office commencing March 31, 2020 are hereby postponed.

Any school board, library board, or village election scheduled to take place in April or May of 2020 is hereby postponed until at least June 1, 2020, and subject to further directive as to the timing, location or manner of voting for such elections.

 

March 27, 2020 (Closure of Schools Until April 15)

The directive contained in Executive Order 202.4 related to the closure of schools statewide shall hereafter be modified to provide that all schools shall remain closed until April 15, 2020, at which time the continued closure shall be re-evaluated. No school shall be subject to a diminution in school aid due to failure to meet the 180 day in session requirement as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, provided their closure does not extend beyond the term set forth herein. School districts must continue plans for alternative instructional options, distribution and availability of meals, and child care, with an emphasis on serving children of essential workers, and continue to first use any vacation or snow days remaining.

March 20, 2020 (Non-Profits and Businesses to Reduce In-Person Workforce by 100%)

The provisions of Executive Order 202.6 are hereby modified to read as follows: Effective on March 22 at 8 p.m.: All businesses and not-for-profit entities in the state shall utilize, to the maximum extent possible, any telecommuting or work from home procedures that they can safely utilize. Each employer shall reduce the in-person workforce at any work locations by 100% no later than March 22 at 8 p.m. Any essential business or entity providing essential services or functions shall not be subject to the in-person restrictions. An entity providing essential services or functions whether to an essential business or a non-essential business shall not be subjected to the in-person work restriction, but may operate at the level necessary to provide such service or function. Any business violating the above order shall be subject to enforcement as if this were a violation of an order pursuant to section 12 of the Public Health Law.

See here for additional guidancehttps://esd.ny.gov/guidance-executive-order-2026

 

March 16, 2020 (Closure of Schools for Two Weeks, Limit on State Aid Forgiveness, Non-essential Employees)

Notwithstanding any prior directives, every school in the state of New York is hereby directed to close no later than Wednesday, March 18, 2020, for a period of two weeks, ending April 1, 2020. The state shall reassess at that time whether to extend such closure beyond this date and may continue to suspend the 180 day instructional requirement. The 180 day suspension will be adjusted to the state’s allowed closure directive. Schools that exceed the period will not be exempted from the 180-day rule. School districts shall develop a plan for alternative instructional options, distribution and availability of meals, and child care, with an emphasis on serving children of parents in the health care profession or first responders who are critical to the response effort. Such plans shall be submitted to the State Education Department and may be amended or modified by the State Education Department, in consultation with the Department of Health and Office of Children and Family Services at any time. School districts in Nassau County, Suffolk County and Westchester County and the City of New York must submit such plans for approval no later than midnight, March 17, 2020 to the State.

Any local government or political subdivision shall, effective March 17, 2020, allow non-essential personnel as determined by the local government, to be able to work from home or take leave without charging accruals, except for those personnel essential to the locality’s response to the COVID-19 emergency. Such non-essential personnel shall total no less than fifty-percent (50%) of the total number of employees across the entire workforce of such local government or political subdivision.

 

March 14, 2020 (Suspension of 180-Day Requirements Due to School Closures)

Any school district which is closing pursuant to a local state of emergency declared as a result of the COVID-19 virus shall be required to first consult with local department of health and also exhaust any available time including snow days and vacation days. Additionally, the State Education Department shall promulgate guidance for districts to ensure access to meals for students in need, critical educational supports for students and distance learning options.

 

March 13, 2020 (Suspension of 180-Day Requirements Due to School Closures; Conduct of Public Meetings)

Suspension of law allowing the attendance of meetings telephonically or other similar service:
Article 7 of the Public Officers Law, to the extent necessary to permit any public body to meet and take such actions authorized by the law without permitting in public in-person access to meetings and authorizing such meetings to be held remotely by conference call or similar service, provided that the public has the ability to view or listen to such proceeding and that such meetings are recorded and later transcribed;

Suspension of law to allow waiver of requirements necessary for apportionment of school aid:
Section 3604(7) of the Education Law, to the extent consistent and necessary to allow the commissioner to disregard such reduction in the apportionment of public money due to a failure by a school to meet the instructional requirements proscribed within this section due to the properly executed declaration of a local state of emergency as defined within sub-section (i), a school is directed to close by a state or local health official or following a properly executed declaration of a state of emergency as defined within sub-section (i), limited to the extent that those specified schools are unable to make up missed instructional days;

 

March 9, 2020 (Purchasing)

Section 409-i of the Education Law, section 163-b of the State Finance Law with associated OGS guidance, and Executive Order No. 2 are suspended to the extent necessary to allow elementary and secondary schools to procure and use cleaning and maintenance products in schools; and sections 103 and 104-b of the General Municipal Law are suspended to the extent necessary to allow schools to do so without the usual advertising for bids and offers and compliance with existing procurement policies and procedures;