KIYC: About 1 in 5 New Jersey school districts intent to start school year all-remotely

About 130 New Jersey school districts, or about one in five, now intend to open the school year offering only remote classes to students and the number continues to steadily increase each day.

News 12 Staff

Aug 21, 2020, 11:21 PM

Updated 1,334 days ago

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About 130 New Jersey school districts, or about one in five, now intend to open the school year offering only remote classes to students and the number continues to steadily increase each day.
Kane In Your Corner reviewed revised reopening plans and communications on websites for every school district in New Jersey. As of midday Friday, 22% of non-charter districts had revised or announced intentions to revise their reopening plans to switch to all-remote education to begin the school year, due to safety concerns.
The vast majority of districts making the switch said they intend to reopen to hybrid schedules in either October or November, although some gave proposed reopening dates as late as 2021. All revisions must be approved by the state.
The Clifton School District is one of several districts that opted to go virtual at Board of Education meetings Thursday night.
"I have to be very honest with this board and the community: I don’t know what the right answer is," Superintendent Danny Robertozzi said. "I don’t know if there is a right answer."
Gov. Phil Murphy opened the door to remote-only instruction last week. Before that, all districts were required to offer at least some in-classroom instruction. At Wednesday's coronavirus briefing, the governor warned districts that applications to offer only remote learning will not automatically be approved.
"Any resubmitted plans to begin the school year with all-remote learning must cite specific health and safety reasons for the change which district leaders must certify to, as well as a timeline to get to an in-person instruction," the governor said.
Whether districts opt out of in-classroom instruction depends greatly on geography,
In four of the state's most sparsely populated counties -- Salem, Cape May, Warren and Sussex -- only one district, Phillipsburg, had announced plans to begin the year with all-remote instruction as of early Friday.
But more than 75% of the districts in densely populated Hudson County intend to offer remote-only instruction. So do more than half of all districts in Middlesex County.
One group that remains united in its opinion: the New Jersey Education Association, which is calling on the state to begin the year with all-remote learning.
Some mental health experts, however, have expressed concerns about how kids might be impacted by continued remote learning, saying it could lead to a rise in depression.
As of midday Friday, districts whose websites indicate they intend to offer all-remote instruction to start the year include:
Atlantic County:
Egg Harbor Township
Pleasantville
Bergen County:
Bergen County Special Services District
Edgewater
Fair Lawn
Garfield
Hackensack
North Arlington
Palisades Park
Ridgefield
Rochelle Park
Teaneck
Burlington County:
Bordentown
Burlington City
Burlington Township
Chesterfield
Eastampton
Edgewater Park
Lumberton
Mansfield
Palmyra
Pemberton
Rancocas Valley Regional
Springfield Township
Westampton
Willingboro
Camden County:
Camden City
Clementon
Collingswood-Oaklyn
Haddon Heights
Lindenwold
Magnolia
Winslow
Cape May County:
None
Cumberland County:
Bridgeton
Commercial Township
Cumberland County Tech Education Center
Cumberland Regional
Downe Township
Fairfield Township
Millville
Stow Creek Township
Upper Deerfield Township
Vineland
Essex County:
Bloomfield
East Orange
Fairfield
Irvington
Millburn
Montclair
Newark
Nutley
Orange
South Orange-Maplewood
West Orange
Gloucester County:
Delsea Regional
Deptford Township
Glassboro
Monroe Township
Woodbury City
Hudson County:
Bayonne
East Newark
Guttenberg
Harrison
Hudson County Schools of Technology
Jersey City
Kearny
North Bergen
Union City
West New York
Hunterdon County:
Flemington-Raritan Regional
Union Township
Mercer County:
Hamilton
Lawrence
Mercer County Special Services School District
Princeton
Trenton
Middlesex County:
Carteret
Cranbury
Dunellen
Edison
Highland Park
Jamesburg
Middlesex
Milltown
Monroe
New Brunswick
North Brunswick
Old Bridge
Perth Amboy
Piscataway
South Brunswick
South Plainfield
South River
Woodbridge
Monmouth County:
Asbury Park
Freehold Borough
Freehold Township
Long Branch
Manalapan-Englishtown
Neptune Township
Morris County:
Boonton Public Schools
Dover
Montville
Ocean County:
Lacey Township
Plumstead
Toms River
Passaic County:
Clifton
Passaic
Paterson
Somerset County:
Bridgewater-Raritan Regional
Franklin Township
Hillsborough
Montgomery
North Plainfield
Sussex County:
None
Union County:
Elizabeth
Hillside
Linden
Plainfield
Rahway
Roselle
Roselle Park
Scotch Plains-Fanwood
Springfield
Union Township
Warren County:
Phillipsburg


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