Reopening Update- 7/27/20

July 27, 2020

Dear Lyndhurst Community:

I would like to thank you for providing feedback to us in recent surveys that pertain to our plans in the fall.  Stay tuned for additional surveys in the very near future.  We are still waiting for additional guidance, including specific requirements that must be included in our reopening plan.  

On Friday, Governor Murphy made an announcement about the reopening of schools.  He stated that parents will have the option of keeping their children home.  We already planned on this being an option, but were waiting for further guidance and clarification.  All New Jersey public school districts must now offer a distance learning plan for students who opt out of returning to class for all or part of the 2020-2021 school year because of fears about the continuing coronavirus pandemic.  We will be sending out another survey in the very near future, asking parents if they would like to keep their children home for a remote option.  It is my goal to gather more information for parents regarding what the full remote option would be, before sending out a survey.

My ultimate priority is to oversee and recommend a plan that puts safety first.  Based on that, I will be recommending an abbreviated schedule to the board of education, which will also consist of splitting the district in half, into two groups.  An abbreviated schedule will be slightly longer than a single session day, but it will not include lunch at school.  Lunch would be served “Grab and Go,” on the way out of each building.  The split will most likely be alphabetical, with an emphasis made on trying to keep siblings/household members together.  This plan will account for two days per week of in-person instructiontwo days per week of remote learning, and an additional remote day for both groups of students at home.  Sample below (more details will follow as we send home more information about a fully remote option):

        School Day- A/B

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Blue Group

Blue Group

Full Remote/Deep Clean

Gold Group

Gold Group

  • K-2 (8:30 - 1:00)  

  • 3-5 (8:15 - 12:45) 

  • 6-8 (8:00 - 12:40)

  • 9-12 (8:00 - 12:50)

  • Pre-K- Normal split day schedule 

There may be some exceptions to the above schedule for specific groups of students.  More information to follow.  

At this time, the plan will be broken into three phases.  The 3 phase-in/out plan will allow for flexibility, structure, and a scheduled and timely reassessment of the implemented schedule.  The hope is to increase things, including, but not limited to: our capacity, length of day, programs, and services offered.  Each “next” phase will be planned during the current phase, with enough time for input from all stakeholders and announcing for planning purposes.

The first three phases are outlined as follows (subject to change):

  • September 1st through October 16th

  • October 19th through November 27th

  • November 30th through January 15th

Families should begin to prepare students for their return to school in this new environment we are all getting accustomed to.  It will be helpful to take steps with your child, before schools reopen, using reusable, washable face coverings/masks of your choice, specifically one that your child feels comfortable with.  Doing this for a brief period of time and then increasing the time will help them get used to the mask/covering, which will hopefully make it easier for them to wear during the school day.  We plan on providing a few reusable ones, and we will also have disposable ones available.  The Road Back published guidance on the use of masks for students when social distancing is or is not in place.  Due to the nature and limitations of our classrooms throughout the district, we may not be able to guarantee social distancing in all situations, which would require me to mandate face coverings/masks for students in all situations.  Staff will always be wearing masks as well.  In this case, we would have a plan in place to provide frequent masks breaks (details to be determined). 

Additionally, if you choose in-person instruction, we urge you to check symptoms of your child every morning before coming to school, including taking their temperature.  We do plan on screening students/staff upon arrival.  Anyone with a temperature exceeding 100.4 degrees will not be permitted to enter schools.

I sincerely thank you for your patience and I share all of your concerns regarding safety.  I can assure you that we are working diligently on this plan, and plan on discussing it tomorrow, at our July 28th Board Meeting (7:00 PM- regular session).  I would like to schedule an additional Q&A Meeting prior to August 4th (our next Board of Education Meeting after tomorrow’s), where we can discuss any questions/concerns that you may have.  It is my understanding that this plan can be revised as we move forward in the summer, as needed.  We look forward to continuing to gather feedback in the upcoming weeks.   

Sincerely,

Anthony Grieco

Superintendent of Schools

 





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