WE HAVE REOPENED!

Brooklyn Conservatory of Music COVID-19 Policy for 2021-2022

We are pleased to welcome our community back for full in person music education learning and music therapy this school year. Our staff and faculty are 100% vaccinated. In order to run our programs as fully as possible, our students, families and community members will need to closely observe BKCM’s policies and procedures for Covid-19 health and safety.

Our health policies were determined by a working committee of BKCM management, administrators, and program directors. As outlined below, these policies were developed with the well being of our entire community in mind, and we believe they will help ensure everyone’s safety this coming school year.

Vaccines required for all who are eligible:

As we shared in our email to the community on August 3rd, BKCM will require all vaccine-eligible staff, faculty, students, and clients be vaccinated against Covid-19 to enter BKCM’s premises. New Yorkers ages 12 and up are now eligible to receive the Covid-19 vaccine. Starting on September 12th, BKCM will require proof of vaccination for any vaccine-eligible person entering our building including: students, parents and caretakers, siblings and relatives (who are vaccine-eligible), visiting performers, concertgoers, vendors and contractors.

To meet the vaccine requirement, all vaccine eligible individuals must be two weeks past either your second dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The fall semester begins on Sunday, September 12th. Any vaccine eligible individuals who are not two weeks past being fully vaccinated at that time will be required to present negative Covid-19 PCR tests on a weekly basis from the start of the semester until October 15th to be permitted entry to the building. All Covid-19 PCR tests must be taken within 7 days of each lesson/class. Please note, that after October 15th, we will NOT be permitting PCR tests as an alternative to vaccine confirmation for entry to the building. BKCM will also not permit accommodations of virtual lessons, refunds, make ups, etc. for those who are eligible and unvaccinated after the October 15th the deadline, these will be considered unexcused absences.

Medical exemptions will be available for those in need with a doctor’s note. Requests for medical exemptions should be submitted to Director of Administration Michal Mechlovitz, and your appropriate Program Director.

Students turning 12/becoming newly eligible:

Students who turn 12 or who become newly eligible to receive the Covid-19 vaccine during the course of the school year will have three (3) months from their 12th birthday or eligibility date to be fully vaccinated.

Testing requirement for Grades 1 and up:

BKCM will require a negative PCR Covid-19 test for all students and clients in First Grade and up who are not yet eligible to receive a vaccine at two points during the year: (1) prior to the school year starting and (2) after the new year (in January). Tests must be taken within 7 days of your first class, lesson, or session, and must be presented prior to entering the building or coming for your first class/lesson/session. A reminder that BKCM will ONLY accept PCR tests, not rapid tests. Any non-vaccine eligible student without a negative PCR Covid test will not be permitted entry into the building and will not be entitled to a make up.

Consistent with the policy of the NYC Department of Education, students who are in Kindergarten or younger will not be subject to our Covid testing requirements

BKCM will also ask that all families travelling out of the Tri-state area at any point during the school year be tested within seven (7) days of returning to New York and prior to coming back to BKCM’s building.

BKCM reserves the right to modify our testing policies at any time throughout the course of the year in consideration of changing public health guidance, Covid transmission rates, and other local factors.

Testing requirement for aerosol instruments:

Students who play aerosol based instruments (i.e. woodwinds, brass, voice), and who are not yet eligible to be vaccinated (ie in the First Grade and up) will be required to present negative Covid-19 PCR tests on a monthly basis. Tests must be submitted by the 1st of each month. The higher frequency of testing for students who play aerosol based instruments was determined in consideration of the collective preferences of our woodwinds, brass, and voice faculty, and in recognition of the increased airflow in the room through aerosol based instruments. Woodwinds and brass students will not be required to play with face masks, however woodwinds and brass faculty may, at their discretion, require bell covers / instrument masks, and masks must be worn at all times when not playing. Vocal students will be required to wear masks until further notice.

We appreciate the inconvenience that this may pose, but we deemed this extra testing step necessary for in person, unmasked lessons for unvaccinated woodwind and brass students, and in person masked lessons for vocal students. Vaccinated students will be subject to masking requirements, but will not be subject to the testing policy.

How do I submit my proof of vaccination/negative PCR Covid-19 test?

All vaccine records and negative PCR Covid-19 test results can be emailed to healthandsafety@bkcm.org. You can also present them to our building Safety Monitors on the first day of classes or lessons.

BKCM will accept all valid forms of vaccine confirmation including physical vaccine cards, copies/screen shots of vaccine cards (with ID if requested by our Safety Monitors), Excelsior pass, etc.

All medical records will remain strictly confidential.

Masks & Social Distancing:

BKCM will continue to require that masks be worn at all times inside BKCM’s building. We will also continue to require social distancing of 3 feet at all times, and 6 feet whenever possible in BKCM’s classrooms, hallways, and landings.

Drop Off & Pick Up

Consistent with last year’s policy and until further notice, BKCM will not permit families or caretakers to wait inside our building. Family and community members should plan for drop off and pick up of their children. Aside from traffic coming and going to studios, we expect our landing areas, hallways, stairwells, and lobbies to be free of people..

Families and caretakers should plan to drop off all children five (5) years of age and older. Families will only be allowed to accompany children under five years old to their classrooms. BKCM Safety Monitors will be available to escort students to their studios. Additional accommodations will be permissible for extenuating circumstances or families with need pertaining to students and clients with disability and medical needs who are accompanied by family, caretakers, or aides.

*Suzuki families will be permitted to have parents/caretakers in lessons as is consistent with the Suzuki method and pedagogy.

Waiting Areas:

In connection with the reopening of our school in October 2020, BKCM acquired and transformed the adjacent vacant lot into a new community garden with tents, tables, chairs, lights, heating and WiFi. The space is open to the public. We encourage families and caretakers to make use of BKCM’s new community garden space as a waiting / gathering area during a child’s lesson or class.

The 2021-2022 school year begins Sunday, September 12th. You can find a copy of our annual calendar here, or on our website. Please also be on the lookout for additional program specific information from our program directors and our faculty prior to the school year starting. While our health and safety policies are applicable across divisions, there may be some differences in operating plans depending on which division you are enrolled in. If you have questions that relate to your program, or your student / family’s unique circumstances, you are encouraged to reach out to myself or your Program Directors.

We appreciate everyone’s cooperation and care with our Covid-19 policies. As always, our team will continue to monitor the changing landscape surrounding Covid, and will keep our community updated on any additional guidance on anticipated changes, such as vaccine boosters, and availability of vaccines for students younger than 12. It will o take everyone’s full participation to ensure that our community continues to remain healthy and safe from Covid-19.

We’re grateful for your commitment to music education and music therapy and we can’t wait to see you all in September. Keep practicing, and take care until then!

 

Yes, you CAN still register for the 2021 – 2022 school year!

For information on enrollment and to sign up for a trial lesson, please call our registrars at (718) 622-3300.

Click here to see our lessons and classes