• RCSD Authorized to Begin Test-to-Stay Program

    Rye City School District

    Test-to-Stay Program FAQs

    December 2021

    Updated January 12, 2022

    Test-to-Stay is a strategy being used by school districts across the country to allow unvaccinated, asymptomatic students who have been exposed to a COVID-positive individual to continue to attend school by conducting daily rapid COVID testing before the start of the school day. The Department of Health has issued very strict guidelines for school districts participating in Test-to-Stay that we must follow; there is no flexibility in Test-to-Stay. Participation in the Test-to-Stay program is completely optional and is the choice of the individual family. Test-to-Stay only allows for a student to attend the instructional component of the school day - it does not allow students to participate in extracurricular, club or athletic activities for the duration of the testing period. Students must continue to quarantine when not in school, i.e., before and after-school and over the weekends or on holidays. 

    Where does the daily testing occur? Daily testing for students participating in Test-to-Stay will be administered at the Rye City School District Central Offices at 555 Theodore Fremd Avenue from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. on school days.

    How does my child participate in the Test-to-Stay program? Once a student is identified as a close contact of a COVID-positive individual, the parent/guardian will be notified of the exposure. If the student is showing any symptoms of COVID, they must quarantine for 5 days. When notified of the exposure, the parent/guardian will receive information regarding the Test-to-Stay program. If the student is not showing symptoms of COVID, the parent/guardian may choose for the student to participate in the Test-to-Stay program. The students may remain in school as long as the student’s test results are negative. 

    Is there a fee to participate in the Test-to-Stay Program? No, participation is free 

    What if I choose not to have my student participate in the program?  Students will be required to quarantine for 5 days after exposure per the DOH if they do not participate in the Test-to-Stay program.

    How many days must the student be tested? Students must be tested for each school day for five days following exposure to COVID. Exposure day is considered Day # 0. Students may not miss a day of testing. Non-school (i.e., weekend days or holidays) are not counted in the five-day testing period. Tests will not be administered on weekends or holidays. After the five days, students may attend school without being tested, but must continue to quarantine outside of the school hours until their 5 day quarantine is complete.

    What if my student is identified as being exposed and is notified days after the exposure date?  Testing will be adjusted accordingly and students will need to test for the remaining days in order to continue to attend in-person school.

    Is a student participating in the Test-to-Stay program allowed to participate in athletics or extracurricular activities? No. According to the Department of Health, students in the program may only attend school for academic purposes.

    What test is used for the Test-to-Stay program? The BinaxNOW rapid nasal swab test is used for the Test-to-Stay program. Once the test is administered, results are available in approximately 15 minutes. The test is a nasal swab and is administered quickly and non-invasively.  

    How will I know the results of my student’s test? Results will be available 15 minutes after the test. The parent/guardians will wait in their vehicle until the results are available. Results will be communicated with the student’s designated school clearing them for attendance. 

    What happens if the student tests positive during the daily testing period? If a student tests positive during the testing period then they will be required to quarantine for 5 days. 

    What happens if my student misses a day of testing while in the Test-to-Stay program? A student may not miss a day of testing on a school day. They will be required to quarantine for the rest of their required quarantine period.

    What if my student was COVID-positive in the last 90 days? A student who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 90 days is not required to quarantine or participate in testing. 

    What happens if the student begins to show symptoms of COVID? Any individual who is showing COVID symptoms should isolate immediately and consult with a healthcare provider for testing recommendations.

    If my student takes a PCR test and is negative, can he/she exit the Test-to-Stay program and return to in-person school? No, a negative PCR test result will not allow an exposed student to return to in-person school or exit Test-to-Stay or quarantine.

    When participating in Test-to-Stay, is my child allowed to participate in regular activities in and out of school? As per the Department of Health, a student participating in Test-to-Stay is only released from quarantine for the academic component of the school day. Students may not participate in any before/after school clubs or extracurricular activities or athletics in or out of school. Additionally, the student must quarantine on days when school is not in session, e.g., Saturday and Sunday.  

    Does a student who has been exposed to COVID in their home by a family member qualify for Test-to-Stay? New York State has mandated that students who have been exposed outside of school are not eligible for Test-to-Stay programs.  Exposure within a household will not qualify an individual for the test-to-stay program.

    Does an individual who is fully vaccinated need to quarantine and/or test after exposure to a COVID-positive individual? A fully-vaccinated individual is defined as one who is two full weeks past the second vaccination dose. A fully-vaccinated individual who is not showing any symptoms is not required to quarantine nor participate in Test-to-Stay as per the Department of Health.


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Welcome to Health Services

  • Each school is staffed by a Registered Professional Nurse. During the school year, the health offices at the elementary schools are open from 8:15 AM to 3:15 PM. The Middle and High School Health Offices are open from 8:00-3:00 PM. During the summer vacation, the health offices are closed. Any questions about the information below, please contact your school nurse at (914) 967-6100. 

    Medication Administration:

    School nurses may administer medications to students during the school day with a written prescription from a physician, written permission from the parent/guardian, and the medication in the original or pharmacy-labeled container.


    Public Health Law- Section 2164: All Students enrolling in any school in New York State for the first time shall submit a written statement signed by a health care provider that they have been immunized as per NYS standards.

    Exemptions from this requirement include

    • Serologic proof of immunity to:
      • Measles
      • Mumps
      • Rubella
      • Hepatitis B or Varicella
      • Medical exemptions approved by the district

    Physical Exams

    New York State requires that a physical exam be on file at the Health Office for all new entrants, and for grades Pre K or K, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11.  Physical exams are also required for students who are interested in participating in a school sport. A physical for sports participation needs to be less than a year old at the start of the sport.

    Health Screening

    Information Regarding the New 2021-22 Health Exam & Screening

    • Health examinations will be required for new entrants and in grades PreK or K, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11.
    • Vision screening for color perception, distance, and near vision acuity will be required for new entrants within 6 months of admission to school. Distance and near vision acuity will be required in grades Pre K or K, 1, 3, 5, 7, and 11.
    • Hearing screening utilizing pure tone testing will be required for new entrants within 6 months of admission to school and in grades Pre K or K, 1, 3, 5, 7, and 11.
    • Scoliosis screening will be required in grades 5 and 7 for girls and grade 9 for boys.

    What You Need To Know

    • In 2021-2022 school year the approved NYSED form is recommended.

    Important Flu Information:

    The Department of Health recommends everyone over the age of 6 months old be vaccinated against influenza. Flu vaccines are widely available. For more information, click on the attached link "The Flu: A Guide for Parents."


    Not sure if your child has head lice?

    Stop by the Health Office anytime and you can be shown how to identify head lice. It may be difficult to identify nits (lice eggs) if you've never seen them before. You may mistake dandruff for nits, or mistake nits as "nothing". Nits are tiny and are attached to the hair shaft, close to the scalp, in such a way that they can only be removed by pulling them down the length of the hair shaft with some force, such as between your fingernails or with a fine tooth comb.

    If your child has head lice...

    Don't overreact! There is no doubt that having lice in your family is a time consuming and tedious experience. They can cause itching and be difficult to get rid of but aren't as harmful as many other common childhood afflictions. Check all family members at home for lice and nits and treat as needed. See the folder to the right for some more information and please call with any questions.  Please see our district policy on lice.

    Peanut/Treenut Awareness

    There are some students with severe food allergies which can be life threatening. Peanut and tree nut allergies are of particular concern. We respectfully request families consider choices other than peanuts or foods containing nuts. No peanut or tree nut products will be allowed to be eaten in the classroom. All children who have peanut or tree nut containing lunches will sit at the "nut table" in the cafeteria. After eating at this table, students are to use disposable wipes to clean their hands. Please speak with your child about the serious consequences of allergies so they can be sensitive to the needs of their classmates. Please use caution when sending in food for class parties and snack. Thank you for helping make a healthy and safe environment for all our students. Please see our district policy on life threatening allergies.

    School Accidents

    The school will make every effort to prevent accidental injuries and to provide first aid as necessary.  In case of an accident, parents will be called immediately. If parents cannot be reached, the emergency contact will be called.

    Hand Sanitizer Use:

    In effort to keep our student body healthy, Rye City School District has reviewed the policy regarding hand sanitizer use. Careful hand washing with soap and water is the recommended method to keep hands clean and free of germs. We are fortunate that most areas in our schools provide access to sinks and soap.   However there are a few areas that do not.   One such area is the cafeteria.   Therefore, dispensers of non-alcohol based hand sanitizers will be mounted in the cafeterias. Each dispenser will be labeled with the product name and ingredients. Only non-alcohol based hand sanitizer will be permitted.  Parents/guardians may provide written notification to the school if they do not wish to have their child use this product. 

    If you wish to learn more about the product provided, you may call your school’s health office.

    Sun Screen

    Sunny Days!  NY state allows students to carry and apply sunblock by themselves if the school has a written permission note from a parent.  If you would like to send in sunblock with your student, please first send a short email giving your permission to the school nurse, and he/she will inform the classroom teacher that your child is allowed to have sunblock with them.  Please do not send in spray sunblock.  Hats may also be worn at recess if desired. 

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