West Milford School Board voted on Tuesday to start the first four weeks of the 2020-2021 school year fully online, district-wide and delay implementation of the hybrid ‘back to school plan’ district until October 1.
Persistent health and safety issues, clarification of required cleaning / disinfection protocols and identification of personnel responsible for performing these specific tasks on time, delays in ordering special equipment and shortages of available teaching staff were some of the issues that arose. for discussion by the school board, subsequently forcing district administrators and the BOE to take a break and consider postponing the start of in-person instruction to resolve these issues.
In the letter dated August 19, the Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Alex Anemone, wrote: “I am writing this letter to reaffirm our commitment to reopen our school buildings in September for in-person learning … If reopening of our school buildings causes additional threats to public health, this plan is subject to change to an all-remote option for all students. “
At the BOE meeting in July, BOE President Lynda VanDyk said when discussing the district’s hybrid plan options that “as a school board there are a few things we need to be concerned about, and I believes that our priority is the safety of students and staff. , then education and giving students what they need (from schools) second, then including daycare; although we all need those things – but we can make the kids flourish a little bit with some kind of continuity – i think that’s important. “
Distance learning requests
At the time, according to Anemone, more than 600 students had applied for the 100% distance learning option offered to families; leaving the expected average number of registrations for the district’s hybrid A Day / B Day program estimated at 1,302; and for each school:
• Apshawa: 86 students
• Maple Road: 125 students
• Marshall Hill: 107 students
• Paradise Knoll: 82 students
• Upper Greenwood Lake: 95 students
• Westbrook: 92 students
• Macopin: 303 students
• WMHS: 412 students
But the situation has changed over the past week.
Administrators comment on changes
Anemone emailed an update letter to the WMTPS community on August 26, stating that the district’s “back-to-school plan” had been changed. He wrote: “A summary of the changes can be found below:
• All schools in the district will begin the 2020-2021 school year on a distance learning model for a period of four weeks.
• The first day of distance learning for all students will be Thursday September 3rd.
• Teaching hours for each building:
• WMHS from 7:18 a.m. to 1:57 p.m.
• Highlander Academy from 7:30 am to 2:09 pm
• Macopin from 7:30 am to 2:09 pm
• Elementary from 8:35 am to 2:50 pm
• Pre-K am 8:35 am – 11:10 am
• Pre-K pm 12:15 – 2:50 p.m.
• An email will be sent to all students (Kindergarten to Grade 12) on September 1st. This email will contain the login and schedule information for their Google meeting on the first day of school. Parents will receive an email from Honeywell with the connection schedule and relevant information.
• Our K-5 parent portal will open at 3:00 pm on Friday August 28th.
• All video conferences will switch from Zoom to Google Meet.
• Our school buildings will be open for in-person learning on Thursday October 1st.
• We are looking for replacement teachers (long term substitute and tenure track) for our District. Available positions have been posted on our website: https://www.applitrack.com/wmtps/onlineapp/. “