Newark Schools Superintendent Tells Teachers, Students to Prep for Potential Shift to Remote Learning After Winter Break

When Newark schools transitioned back into the classrooms this year for fully in-person instruction, the district’s reported COVID case and quarantine numbers remained relatively low towards the end of September. 

Amid an uptick in cases citywide paired with the emergence of the omicron variant, the superintendent said the district experienced a “concerning” number of positive cases in the past four weeks. 

In the last six months, León reported that 507 staff members have already tested positive for the virus. To put that number into perspective, 578 staff members tested positive over the course of 15 months from March 2020 to July 2021, according to district officials. 

Since July 1, the superintendent said that 750 students have tested positive. From July 1 to Nov. 23, less than 200 students had tested positive for the virus, León said. In the last four weeks, those numbers have nearly doubled, he said. As a result, the superintendent said that 90 classes have gone or are now going remote. 

During the break, district officials are planning to carry out deep cleanings of all school buildings and facilities. Upon return in January, the superintendent said that the goal is to resume in-person instruction and tutoring unless the circumstances warrant remote instruction for specific classes, groups, or schools. 

Weekly rapid testing in schools would also resume, he said. 

“As we are moving into the holiday, I remind everyone that any changes will be communicated with you and posted directly on the district or school’s website,” said León.

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published this page in News and Politics 2021-12-23 03:34:07 -0800