Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics

The Rensselaer County Health Department is administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine at pop-up clinics throughout the county this summer. Walk-ins are accepted. Please note, individuals MUST be 18+ to be eligible for this single dose vaccine. View vaccine clinic schedule: https://www.rensco.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Summer-Vaccination-Pop-Ups.pdf

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Student raising hand in classAfter a brief break from an extraordinary school year, nearly 400 students in grades K-8 are back for summer school. Students in the traditional Extended School Year Program and a new K-8 Elevate Summer School Program were dropped off at Columbia High School for their first day on Tuesday and greeted by dozens of teachers and staff who ushered them inside.

Special Education students in the Extended School Year Program are working with teachers on specific areas in which regression is expected, and they are receiving services dictated by their Individualized Educational Plan such as speech, counseling or physical therapy.

“Extended school year programs through special education provide students with disabilities opportunities to maintain their current academic and social-emotional skills,” said Molly McGrath, Director of Pupil Personnel Services. “This is a six-week program where students continue to work on individual goals while also staying in a consistent school routine to prevent regression in skills. There are many fun and engaging opportunities to keep students on track and ready for the fall.”

Students enrolled in the new Elevate Summer School Program were registered by their parents this past spring to combat any potential learning loss from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instruction is focused on core content areas of English Language Arts and Math for elementary students and ELA, Math, Science and Social Studies for middle school students. Students also benefit from increased socialization with their classmates on a daily basis.

“The goal of this new K-8 Elevate Education Summer School Program is to help prepare students as they transition onto the next grade level in the fall,” said Kathleen Russell, who is principal of this program. “We will focus our efforts on strengthening students’ understanding of the critical learning standards and promoting students’ overall wellness that may have been impacted during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

High school students will start a new enrichment program on Monday in addition to the APEX credit recovery program.

“We are thrilled to be able to offer a variety of summer academic programs to support our students and families,” said Assistant Superintendent James McHugh. “We are extremely grateful to our teachers, support staff and providers who have committed to serving our students after an exhausting and challenging school year. We are hopeful that these efforts will help support our students as they return to school in the fall.”