GREAT MEADOWS, NJ (Warren County) – Starting next Wednesday, Great Meadows Regional School District will go to an all-virtual teaching model until Dec. 11, according to Superintendent of Schools Michael Mai.
“When we moved forward with our Reopening Plan in July, there were many who thought we would be lucky to remain open past September due to the uncertainties surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. However, thanks to the planning, vigilance and determination of our staff, students, and families, we have been able to keep our doors open for the first 54 days of school. Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, Covid-19 has now entered our schools and our community, as well as those in our surrounding areas,” Mai said.
“The Northwest cluster of Warren, Morris, Sussex, and Passaic Counties currently has the 2nd highest case rate in the state. As anticipated, we have entered into the Orange “High Risk” category on the New Jersey Department of Health Covid-19 Activity Level Report. The regulations put forth for schools in this category require a level of contact tracing unsustainable by school and health officials,” Mai said.
Therefore, in consultation and collaboration with the Warren County Department of Health and the Office of the Warren County Executive Superintendent, the district will move to a fully virtual learning model, starting Wednesday, Nov. 25 through Friday, Dec. 11. The first remote day, Wednesday, Nov. 25, will remain an early release day, as scheduled on the district calendar, Mai said.
“Moving to a fully virtual schedule allows GMRSD, starting Monday, November 30, to provide a full-day schedule for all students, unless otherwise indicated on the district calendar. District staff will have the option to instruct from home so long as they have all appropriate equipment available to provide quality, high level instruction. Information about schedules and other important details can be found by visiting www.gmrsd.com > Headlines and Features > District/School Preparedness Plans. Specific class times will be provided by teachers,” Mai said.
“We are scheduled to return to our hybrid learning model on Monday, December 14. However, please know in advance that the district will work remotely beyond December 11 should our region remain at the Orange/High Risk category or move to the Red/Very High Risk category. We advise the GMRSD community to prepare now as if the district will be working remotely for an extended period of time. My office will contact the school community no later than December 11 as to the next steps the district will be taking,” Mai said.
The following are items of importance:
- The full day will not be solely conducted on Google Meet. There will be synchronous and asynchronous
lessons, instructional videos, independent work assigned via Google Classroom, time for students to
complete work for specials, break times, and a scheduled lunch period.
- Free lunch remains available to all students during this time of closure every Monday at 3:30. The pickup
location is the Gym entrance of Great Meadows Middle School.
- Related services required by all IEPs will be conducted virtually.
- All in-person CST testing will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
- If you require Internet connectivity, please contact your building principal.
“These are difficult times, and we know that this pandemic has affected each of your families in a different way. For many, your holiday plans may be drastically changed. For some, the presence of Covid-19 restrictions for the last eight months may have become exhausting. Despite it all, I encourage you, especially at this time of year, to reflect and give thanks for the things, large or small, that bring joy to your life. I am thankful to work in a school with such dedicated teachers and remarkable students, and I am proud to be a Great Meadows Jaguar! Please be safe and I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving,” Mai said.