BUFFALO, N.Y. — Families are preparing to send students back to school with loosened COVID-19 restrictions.

What You Need To Know

  • New York state is relaxing COVID-19 protocols for schools
  • Parents said they are excited to see their kids have a normal school year
  • Superintendents said it will take common sense to make it work

“This year I’m hopeful and comfortable enough with how everything’s gone to where I’m trusting the schools to make the right decisions,” said Mike Straw, a parent of two. His oldest, Brayden, is heading into pre-K in West Seneca.

Straw said Brayden has been opening up to new people more as he goes to social events like the district’s first ever “On My Way to K!” event.

As Brayden starts his school career, Straw said he plans to pay close attention to signs and symptoms of COVID so he can keep Brayden home.

“The last thing I’d want is to send my son to school and then find out he got others sick, so I’d hope others would feel the same way,” said Straw.

New York state school students do not have to wear masks or social distance this year. This is also the first full school year that children under 5 are eligible for the vaccine.

Administrators at Niagara Falls City School District said everyone should know what to do in the event of a possible COVID case at home.

“Use common sense,’ said Mark Laurrie, NFCSD superintendent. “If you’re sick, you stay home. See your primary care physician and be considerate of others. Easy. We all need to do that whether it’s COVID or the flu season.”

He said the school is equipped and ready to reinstate guidelines if that became necessary.

The latest NYS COVID protocols for schools can be found here.