School District Planning For Reopening, But ‘Will Be Ready’ If Schools Remain Closed In September

Schools Superintendent John Ravally is working with superintendents across the county to devise re-opening plans for schools in September. (File photo.)

School officials are planning how buildings will reopen come September, and are making contingency plans if they don’t.

Schools Superintendent John Ravally is working with other Somerset County superintendents and the Somerset County Executive Superintendent of Schools to devise a plan, a district spokeswoman said.

Gov. Phil Murphy ordered all school buildings closed on March 18. Since then, district students have been taught in a series of 12-day “remote learning” modules.

That will be how the school year ends, as Murphy recently ordered all buildings to remain closed for the reminder of the school year.

Ravally and the other superintendents are working to “formulate county wide guidelines on the re-opening of schools,” district spokeswoman Mary Clark said in an email. “We are currently reviewing re-opening plans from other states and countries.”

Ravally has also “begun working with the Dr. Brenda Sofield, Director of Pupil Personnel Services, and a team of district nurses to create procedures and protocols on assessing student/staff health in the upcoming school year,” Clark wrote. “Administrators of other areas, such as food services, buildings and grounds, transportation, security, curriculum and instruction and personnel will also be contributing to the formation of a re-opening plan.”

Clark said the possibility that schools may not open in September has also entered the discussions.

“Should the need occur for additional remote learning days next year, we will be ready and will utilize the feedback that we received from staff and student families during these past weeks,” she wrote.

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