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Monday, July 27, 2020

Not Until It's Safe - Sign Our Open Letter

An open letter to union and district leadership: 

To the President of the Rochester Teachers Association, Adam Urbanski, the President of the Rochester Association of Paraprofessionals Angie Rivera, and Board of Education Non Teaching Professionals President Dan DiClemente and Lesli Myers-Small, RCSD Superintendent: 


We as parents, educators, staff members in the Rochester City School District are writing to express our support for the #14daysnonewcases campaign. As parents, we want nothing more than to keep our children safe and to work with teachers and the district to make the right choices for our children. As educators and staff, we are dues-paying members of RTA, RAP, and BENTE and need you to use our strength in numbers to stand up. Our unions and leaders must formally declare that we will not return to campus until our county reports no new cases of COVID-19 for at least 14 days.

While there’s nothing we want more than to see our students in-person again, and to see our children thrive in their school environment, it is far too dangerous for our children, our families, and our colleagues to resume in-person instruction this fall. Until it is safe, we must develop and implement a more robust distance learning program for the children. To allow our students to equitably access this distance learning program, we must also demand that our students be provided with all necessary technology, such as personal computers and high-speed internet access.

States and school districts are unveiling reckless, unethical school reopening plans that put our colleagues and their families, our students and their families, and ourselves in extreme danger. Even in countries that have far better controlled the pandemic, they have had to close schools soon after reopening them. Schools in China and South Korea have closed after infections flared up. Students and staff have contracted COVID-19 in schools after they reopened in Canada, France, the Netherlands, and Israel, forcing them to close again. The number of COVID-19 patients under 10 years old in Oregon has increased fivefold, matching the number of cases in patients over 80 years old. More than 17,000 children under the age of 18 have contracted COVID-19 in Florida alone. Now new research suggests that children transmit COVID-19 just as easily as adults do.

These trends and research clearly demonstrate that it is irresponsibly dangerous to reopen school campuses this fall. If elected officials and district officials want campuses to reopen, then they need to implement the public health measures that they should have implemented months ago, including, but not limited to: mass testing, contact tracing, and strict suspension of nonessential business and travel activity. Our governments also must provide the economic relief we and our students need to endure these public health measures, including, but not limited to: basic income, rent and mortgage cancellation, protection from eviction, and single-payer healthcare throughout the pandemic.

As educators and staff members, we know how impossible it will be to implement strict physical distancing, mask enforcement, constant sanitation, and hybrid learning on every campus in our district. As parents, we do not and should not expect our teachers and children to endure these harsh and harmful conditions emotionally, mentally and physically. We all would rather everyone stay healthy and alive than pressured into dangerous and emotionally damaging situations. We must refuse to return to campus until our county reports no new cases for at least 14 days.

We need our unions and leaders to stand up to protect all, not just the few.


Amy Schramm,     RTA
Michelle Sapere,    RTA
Amy Labrosa,    RTA
Meagan Harris,     RTA
Kathryn Rebholz,    RTA
Jessica Fleming,     RCSD Parent
Timothy Hartman    RCSD Parent
Teresa James,    RTA
Claire Labrosa,    RTA
Emily Zeh,    RTA, RCSD Parent
Shelli Sotgiu,    RTA
Lara McElwain,    RCSD Parent
Marybeth Callahan,    RCSD Parent
Lianne Dupree,    RTA
Heather Modzel,    RCSD Parent
Molly Gildea,    RCSD Parent
Liz Sweet,    RTA
Carol and Bob Zimmerman,    RCSD Parent
Pavatsath Bouphavong,     RTA
Rebekka Cranmer,    RTA, RCSD Parent
Kathi Cavalieri,    RTA
Shelby Otis,    RTA
Kristen French,    RTA
Maggie Cain,     RTA
Delaina Carraway,    RTA
Tracy Pakusch,    RTA
Mary Beth Elko,    RCSD Parent
Mycerdia L. Dukes,    RCSD Parent
Bree-Ana Dukes,     RCSD Parent
Elizabeth Kelley,    RAP, RCSD Parent
Alicia,    RTA
Rebecca Dilley,     RCSD Parent
Barbara Brown (former RCSD Administrator), RCSD Parent
Andi Polanski, RTA
Edward Kelley, RCSD Parent
Laura Matthews, RCSD Parent
Carrie Gilroy , RTA
Amy Pastor , RTA
Alison Steixner, RTA
Megan Sofia , RTA
Brenda Driscoll, RTA
Maeve Cullinane, RCSD Parent
Sara Oliveiri, RCSD Parent
Martha Morales-McBride , RTA
Jasmin Davislove , RCSD Parent
Ashley Ladiges , RTA, RCSD Parent
Narlene Sanchez, RTA
Carol Lowe, RTA

Sarah Cooley,   RTA
Susan DeFabbia, RTA   
Lisa Zeller,    RTA
Tracey Farmer,  RTA
Peter Baillargeon,      RTA
Stephanie Lawson,       RTA
Tara Pios,      RTA, RCSD Parent
Sarah Dasher,   RTA, RCSD Parent
Julia Lima,     RTA
Mary Beth Arnold,       RTA
Cynthia Nado,   BENTE
Laura Hammond,  RCSD Parent
Erin Hoover,    RTA
Katherine H. Wardlow,   RTA, RCSD Parent
Annmarie Ramos, RCSD Parent
Jay Rowe,       RCSD Parent
Annissa Hines,  RCSD Parent
Margaret Toscano - RTA and      RCSD Parent
Adelina Andreani,       RTA
Kristen Baskewicz,      RTA
Nicole Mehlenbacher,    RCSD Parent
Elyse Boress,   RTA
Denise Anderson,        RTA
Catrina Evans,  RCSD Parent
Antoine Evans,  RCSD Parent
Haley Moore,    RTA
Kathleen Sanchez,       RTA
Willow Jones,   RTA
Jennifer Osgood-Wojtylak ,      RTA
Wanda Labrador,         RTA
Michele Pickell,        RCSD Parent
Stephanie Gallant,      RCSD Parent
Amparo Nieves,  RCSD Parent
Jodi Cook,      RTA
Bridget Strub,  RCSD Parent
Joyce Jackson-House,    RCSD Parent
Jillian Hackett,        RTA
Susan Klawon ,  RTA, RCSD Parent
Tiffany Beal    , RCSD Parent
Montoria Taylor,        RCSD Parent
Susan Klawon    RTA, RCSD Parent
Yolanda Sims-Hester & Simon Hester,      RCSD Parent
Andre Beal,     RCSD Parent
Gisela Caraballo,       RCSD Parent
Darlene Rodriguez,      BENTE
Tanya Appleberry,       RCSD Parent
Kylo Appleberry,        RCSD Parent
Veronica Rodriguez,     RCSD Parent
Christy Williams,       RCSD Parent
Maria Hambas,   RTA
Sarah Peers,    RCSD Parent
Douangmany Phannola,    RCSD Parent
Naydaly Gonzalez Ortolaza,      RCSD Parent
Alex Barna,     RTA
Carrie Roods,   RTA
Susan DeRock,   RCSD Parent
Kara Miller,    RTA
Kareny Morales, RCSD Parent
Katie Breedy,   RTA
Katie Rich,     RTA
Johnna Muhlenhaupt,     RCSD Parent
Sharon Peck,    RCSD Parent
Julie Tucker,   RTA
Tarra Breedy, RCSD Parent
Tracy Clark,    RCSD Parent
Nicole Pagano Meyer,    RCSD Parent
Catherine Buskey,       RTA
Renee Smith,    BENTE
Antoinette Harvey,      RAP
Dorothy Caine,  RCSD Parent
Fannie Williams,        RCSD Parent
Cynthia Clay    RCSD Parent
Amy Fricon      RCSD Parent
Tesha Breedy    RTA, RCSD Parent
John Breedy, Jr.        RCSD Parent
Christy Williams        RCSD Parent
Melissa Nicholson       RTA
Debra Joseph-McEwen     Other
Erin Thompson   RCSD Parent
Clarence Thompson       RCSD Parent
Pete Strub      RCSD Parent
Katherine Holderbaum    RTA
Meghan Bosek    RTA
Marie D'Angelo  RCSD Parent
Jerome Bell     RCSD Parent
Jamie Nunes     RTA
Patricia Ceravolo       RCSD Parent
Jackie Ferris   RTA
Kerry Robertson RTA
Linaliz Vazquez         RCSD Parent
Kelbby D Ortiz  RCSD Parent
Kathleen Sanchez        RTA
Amy Vaughn      RTA
Kenisha Campbell        RTA
Sarah Herzog    RTA
Lisa Reyes      RTA
Mattie Shaw-Elliott     RTA
Ashley McGill   RCSD Parent
Susan Sorriero  RTA
Nafeesha Lovett         RCSD Parent
Quiana D. Joseph        RTA, RCSD Parent
Polly Miller    Other
Celia Petty     RCSD Parent, Other
Alicia Castellon        RTA
Leia Petty      RCSD Parent
Debra Kiefer    RTA
Kyle Phillips   Other
Rachel Tillman  Other
Katelyn Santiago        Other
Erika Sorbello  RCSD Parent
Lisa A. Buck    RTA
Meghan Kehrer   Other
Andrew Kehrer   Other
Margaret Koch   Other
Aimee Shaver, City Charter Teacher      Other
Christine Meyer Other
Rosa Curtis     Other
Dave Sutliff-Atias      RTA
Jeremy Morrow   RTA
Stephanie Douglas       RCSD Parent
Derick Douglas  RCSD Parent
Salena Klass    RCSD Parent
Paul Schramm    RCSD Parent
Anna Ka Other
Maggie Gallagher        RTA
John F Hoffman  RCSD Parent
Salena klass    RCSD Parent
Christina Foster        RCSD Parent
Kim Garlock     ASAR
Maddie Munson   RCSD Parent
Erin Wolf       RTA, RCSD Parent
Patricia Morales-Kakuda RTA
Todd C Kakuda   RAP
Greg Morin      Other
Margot Egling   RTA
Stacey Everts   RCSD Parent
Jeremy  Everts  RCSD Parent
Tonya Matthews  Other
Stacy Head      RTA
Antoniece Poole         RCSD Parent
Steven Buck     RTA
Nancy Pigno     Other
Charlene Doell RTA
Mary Hurley     RTA


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