March 16, 2020
I hope you and your families are staying safe and healthy and heeding the government’s advice as we navigate new territory as a result of COVID-19. Since your last My Touro GSE communication, things have obviously changed. New York City Schools and school districts throughout the Tri-State region have closed for several weeks, and possibly longer.
You can find Touro-wide updates and coronavirus communications on the Touro Coronavirus page, but I wanted to share Graduate School of Education related concerns here. The following are guidelines for clinical experiences (i.e., fieldwork, practicum, and internships) at this time. Our goal is to mitigate any restraints within our control to ensure that all state requirements for clinical experiences can be met in a manner that is least disruptive to your academic success.
We ask that those affected by a school closure touch base immediately with her/his University Supervisor for a plan of action. Candidates will need to report on the documented hours and clinically based assignments completed to date. All other assignments that do not require observations or directly working with students and or school personnel should be completed as scheduled.
Should schools providing virtual instruction or programming permit you to do so, we expect that you will abide by the school protocol for training for continued progress toward meeting clinical requirements. You must receive expressed permission from the school to participate in virtual activities and discuss with your University Supervisor whether or not such actions are appropriate for your program. If deemed appropriate, a plan must be developed between the candidate, University Supervision, and the P-12 school site to organize virtual supervision. The University Supervisor will fill documentation of all approvals and plans for the Office of Clinical Practice.
At this time, it is not realistic to seek new placements for candidates based on a school closure. More information will follow as we learn more regarding the New York State protocol and those of our partnering school districts.
Should you have questions regarding clinical practice beyond the assistance of your University Supervisor, please feel free to contact the Office of Clinical Practice (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Jacob Easley II, Ph.D.
Dean, Graduate School of Education