Paterson plans to keep school buildings closed until November

Reopening Schools
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PATERSON, N.J. — Paterson has joined a growing list of New Jersey school districts starting the new academic year with all-remote learning.

Wednesday night, Paterson Public Schools announced that they plan to not reopening school buildings until November.

“The Paterson Board of Education has unanimously voted in favor of a resolution that will delay the opening of school buildings at least until November 1st.” they wrote in a Facebook post.

Paterson Schools said the district will assess the conditions again on October 15 to determine if school buildings can reopen on Nov. 1 as planned.

They noted that their decision had not yet been approved by Department of Education.

The news came just hours after Gov. Phil Murphy said some New Jersey schools would have the option to start the year with all-remote learning.

Murphy’s Wednesday announcement was a reversal from his previous guidance in June that said all school buildings should open in some capacity.

School districts that opt for an all-remote learning model will have to submit to the state Department of Education an explanation of what health and safety protocols cannot be met to allow in-person learning, Murphy said.

Paterson joins three other New Jersey districts — Elizabeth, Bayonne and Jersey City — voting to submit a reopening plan that starts the school year off with all-remote learning.

On Tuesday night, multiple groups representing New Jersey educators released a statement calling on Gov. Murphy and the Department of Education to direct all of the state’s public schools to open remotely for the fall.

Schools statewide were ordered to close in mid-March as the coronavirus outbreak began. Students finished out the academic year via remote learning.

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