MILLSTONE – Students in the Millstone Township K-8 School District are receiving fully remote instruction for the remainder of December, but may be permitted to physically return to school on Jan. 11.
During a Dec. 14 Board of Education meeting, Superintendent of Schools Christopher Huss said Jan. 11 would be the date for the scheduled physical return of students to their school.
During the 2020-21 school year, because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many students had been receiving their education in a hybrid model that combines in-person instruction and remote instruction on alternating days of the week.
Some students have only been receiving remote instruction if their parents selected that option at the beginning of the school year.
In late October, students began physically attending school five days a week if their parents choose that option.
In mid-November, the district shifted to a model of fully remote instruction for all students. Huss cited a rise in coronavirus cases for the decision to have Millstone move to fully remote instruction.
As noted by Huss, the COVID Regional Risk Assessment deems Monmouth County to currently have a high risk for the virus. State officials recommend a fully remote instruction model to be used by school districts in high risk areas.
“The reopening plan is closely aligned with the New Jersey COVID Activity Level Index and we will be using the central east risk levels as our specific metrics to guide any changes to our instructional programs and our instructional models should they be needed in the future,” the superintendent said during the Dec. 14 meeting.
“Based on our region status, we will either move forward with less restrictive practices or move backward to our more restrictive practices. This updated plan will serve as a road map for our decisions moving forward and remove ambiguity from the equation.
“Based on the newly developed local matrix, our current plan is to have all families who have chosen to participate in in-person learning return to school on Jan. 11 using early dismissal schedules in grades one through eight, while maintaining the half-day schedule in kindergarten,” Huss said.
Parents who previously selected fully remote instruction for their children will continue to have that option when the rest of the district physically returns to school.
“I am hopeful our newly amended return to school plan will not only bring students back into our buildings in January, but will keep them there for the remainder of the year,” Huss said.
The district operates the Millstone Township Primary School, the Millstone Township Elementary School and the Millstone Township Middle School.