NISKAYUNA, N.Y. (NEWS10) — When the Niskayuna School board voted to allow choir students to stand 6 feet instead of 12 feet apart, it was quite literally music to the students’ ears.

“Now, the kids can hear one another,” explained Christina Pizzino- Catalano, Niskayuna High School Choral Director. “It’s a sense of community. It’s a sense of something back towards normal.”

A step towards normalcy, going a long way in making a difference for the students–even those learning remotely.

While social distancing has decreased a bit, safety protocols such as using a hybrid learning model and mask wearing are still in place at the school.

“Our Friends of Music so generously was able to fund the purchase of specific masks for our band students, for our wind students,” said Pizzino- Catalano. “And they have zippers that they just put their mouth piece in to make it safer. We have guards up for our students who play the flute.”

She said for some students, music is the reason why they come to school. Pizzino- Catalano shares what she hopes her students are getting out of her class during these unprecedented times.

“Essentially that what I’m bringing to the students this year is something joyful and therapeutic, ya know? And that music just takes them away from everything that’s going on around them.”