Return to Headlines

Important Information from the Chester Union Free School District

October 16, 2020                   

Dear Parents/Guardians, Faculty & Staff:

Yesterday our district was informed by the Orange County Department of Health that two individuals from Chester Academy tested positive for COVID-19. The individuals are currently isolating and have not been in school since September 30.  Due to federal health privacy laws further information about their identity cannot be released.

As always, the safety of our students and staff is our highest priority. After consultation with the Orange County Department of Health, Chester schools will continue to be open and in operation. Those students and staff that are determined by the Department of Health as being potential contacts to the affected individuals will be contacted by the Department for contact tracing. In general, it is recommended that anyone who thinks that they may have had contact with, or had exposure to an infected person monitor their symptoms and contact their primary care physician or the Orange County Department of Health if symptoms persist. The phone number for the Orange County Department of Health is (845) 291-2330.

This situation is a reminder to all of us that Coronavirus is still active and that we all need to be vigilant in following safety protocols that protect us from illness, including COVID 19. In addition, this is also a reminder that circumstances can change and that we all need to remain ready to respond to new information and changing conditions.  Please note the following information about Coronavirus and COVID-19:

Safety Protocols

  • Make sure your child is wearing a mask. 
  • Make sure your child is washing their hands. 
  • Keep your child home if they are sick.
  • Call your primary care provider if you or your child has symptoms of COVID-19. 

Symptoms of COVID-19 include:   

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea


How does COVID-19 spread?

COVID-19 spreads mainly from having close contact with someone who has a COVID-19 infection. The virus is thought to be spread by droplets from person to person when they speak, cough, or sneeze.  Droplets travel less than 6 feet. When droplets from another person get in your mouth or nose, it can be inhaled into your lungs. This virus can be spread by people without symptoms. 


How can parents and guardians help prevent COVID-19 from spreading?  

  • If your child is sick, keep them home.
  • Make sure members of your household wash their hands often using soap and water for at least 20 seconds. 
  • Make sure every member of your household covers their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or their elbow, and then washes their hands afterwards.
  • Wear a mask in public when you cannot stay 6 feet apart from other people.


Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns regarding this matter.




Denis M. Petrilak

Superintendent of Schools