Towns Getting Back on Track After Storm

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Fallen trees and downed power lines in New Providence were a problem for many days after the Oct. 29 snowstorm. Credits: Michael Shapiro
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MILLBURN

The following information was sent to Millburn/Short Hills parents from Superintendent Crisfield:

Things are getting better in the township, but clearly not to the point where we can operate on a "normal" basis. Certain areas remain a concern, so we have devised an approach that maximizes what opportunities we have without putting anybody in harm's way. Believe me when I say this has been a complicated and difficult process.

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Here is the plan for both Thursday (11/3/11) and Friday (11/4/11) for the Millburn schools. Please read the below information carefully, as it's involved and different for individual schools:

1. High School and Middle School will be open, with modified busing service (see below), operating on a delayed opening basis (i.e., two hour delayed opening for students—staff will be in one hour prior—see below).

2. South Mountain and Wyoming will be open, with normal busing service, operating on a delayed opening basis (i.e., two hour delayed opening for students, one hour delayed for staff).

3. Deerfield will be open, with NO busing service, operating on a delayed opening basis (i.e., two hour delayed opening for students, one hour delayed for staff).

4. Glenwood and Hartshorn will both be CLOSED on both Thursday and Friday (regardless of whether or not power can be restored).

We are acutely aware that this plan is not ideal for many Millburn families, and we apologize in advance to those families for whom this really doesn't work. In the end, we are trying to do what is best for our school community as a whole. If for any reason you are uncomfortable with any of the above arrangements, by all means do what is best for your family. To that end, all absences in the next two days are automatically deemed "excused" (we just need a parent to please call to verify the absence). Other important notes are as follows:

  • PLEASE CARPOOL as much as possible if you are at ANY of the five schools open and will be driving your child to school. We are very concerned with traffic volume caused by the reduced busing service and made worse by roads that are stressed enough as is from the storm.
     
  • HIGH SCHOOL AND MIDDLE SCHOOL BUSING: Please see our website for details, but basically, there will not be normal bus “runs” but instead a “shuttle system” that will be running on main roads through town and picking up middle and high school students, together, and shuttling them to schools. We are starting schools two hours late so that no student is waiting for a bus at a new stop in the dark. Again, please see our website (www.millburn.org) for stop location and other pickup details. Bus service home from the High School and the Middle School will also be modified—students will in the afternoon take their normal bus home from school and that bus will stop as close as possible to their “normal” stop, road conditions permitting.
     
  • Staff members will be reporting one hour late (as opposed to the two hours late that students are arriving), so as to get them in and off the roads before the drop off AND so that parents can drop their students at school (if they’re choosing to carpool/drive) earlier. So, if you are driving, you may drop your student off earlier than the two hour delay would normally have you drop off and you are in fact encouraged to do this in order to cut down on traffic volume at peak times. Student supervision at all five schools will be possible due to the staff coming in just one hour late.
     
  • Glenwood and Hartshorn will most likely have to make up these two days by scheduling a four-hour session on two different Saturday mornings at some point in the future TBD. We are seeking clarification from the state now on this matter, but this is the least disruptive way to get these two schools back “in synch” with the other five in terms of total # of days of school.
  • We are not optimistic about the state granting any relief from the mandated 180 days of school every year. Such relief has not been granted in anybody’s recent memory, even during the terrible snowstorms in the early 1990’s. But, we can hope and we will certainly keep everyone apprised of the state’s decision in this regard.
  • As per the officially adopted district calendar for 2011-12, if we run out of scheduled “snow days” (which we have done as of today) and if we need any more “weather days” this school year, the days will be made up out of the April vacation week before any are added to the end of school in June. Not a pleasant prospect, I know, but we really have no choice—maybe we can catch a break and not have any more “weather” days this year…

 That's it for now. I want to apologize again if the above plan causes you or your family more upset in these already trying times, but we are confident that this is the best approach for the community as a whole, given what we have to work with. As always, your teacher, principal and central office staff, myself included, stand ready to work with you in any way to help ease any burdens or to just help get through all this dislocation. Please do not hesitate to reach out if we can be of assistance.

Busing Instructions

Hartshorn and Glenwood Schools are CLOSED

All other schools will be operating on a two-hour delay. Teachers will be on a one-hour delay. Please be at school one hour before your school begins.

MHS begins at 9:45 a.m.;  MMS begins at 9:40 a.m., Deerfield, South Mountain and Wyoming begin at 10:35 a.m.

Elementary School Busing:

South Mountain and Wyoming:

Buses will run on their regular routes, two hours after the usual pick up time.  Students should be at their regular bus stop 2 hours after the regular pick up time. End of day procedures will be the same as normal.

Deerfield School

There will be NO BUSING to Deerfield School . Parents are asked to carpool, and in order to stagger dropoffs, you may drop children off at school beginning at 10 a.m.

Middle and High School Busing:

Buses will travel along the main roads listed below and pick up both middle and high school students who are waiting at a corner along those roads. Please have your child wait at the corner that is closest to your home along one of these roads. Students should be waiting at the stop beginning at 8:45 a.m. The buses will making a continuous shuttle from these stops to the Middle School and to the High School.  Each bus will pick up both middle and high school students!

After School:  Students should get on their regular bus.  The driver will drop students off at the corner of the main road closest to their home (most likely the stop where they were picked up in the morning.)

Main Roads

Old Short Hills Rd

Parsonage Hill Rd

Great Hills Rd

Millburn Ave

Main St

Morris Tpk to Hobart Gap Rd

White Oak Ridge Rd

South Orange Ave

Kean Rd

Winthrop Rd

Deerfield Rd

Highland Ave

Essex St

Baltusrol Way

Woodland Rd

Short Hills Ave

Wyoming Ave

Myrtle Ave

Ridgewood Rd

Glen Ave

WEST ORANGE

West Orange remains under a 'Limited State of Emergency' as crews continue to restore power to the Township.

As of 6 p.m. today, the emergency shelter will be relocated to the N.J. National Guard Armory at 1315 Pleasant Valley Way (2nd floor). The shelter has cots, food and water for all residents to help get through the after-effects of the storm. The shelter will remain open until further notice.

The West Orange Public Schools will be open on Thursday, Nov. 3 at the regular start time. As a safety precaution we ask that you accompany your child to the bus stop or school if possible if there are downed trees and lines in your area. Also, please be patient with bus delays that may occur. We thank you for your patience, understanding, and assistance in making sure that the children return to school in a safe manner.

Our emergency personnel, Department of Public Works and PSE&G are continuing to work with all levels of government to clear our roads and restore power as quickly as possible. We ask that you please be patient with the response and understand that we are doing all we can to help our residents get through this storm.

Halloween Trick-or-Treating has been rescheduled for Monday, Nov. 7 in an effort to keep residents and their children safe.

NEW PROVIDENCE

Schools will be closed again on Thursday.

Power has been restored to Borough Hall and they are open. As of 5 p.m. today, the majority of the New Providence Downtown and Central Avenue retail, food and fuel establishments have power and are open for business, and most homes in the borough have had their power restored.

The warming and charging station at the Summit Middle School is a regional center and is available to all citizens who do not have power.

CHATHAM TOWNSHIP

Mayor Nicole Hagner said department of Public Works crews continue their efforts to open all roads and pick up the debris from the roadway. This task has been hampered by the presence of downed wires, often tangled with the fallen trees and limbs and the sheer volume of material.

The township has hired outside contractors to assist with the cleanup.

Power has been restored to some areas of the Township but large areas are still without power. JCP&L crews are working to repair downed power lines. We are hopeful that the rest of the Township will see power restored soon.

The Municipal Offices remain closed but staff is working at the police headquarters. Call 973-635-4600 for information. The front desk at Police Headquarters is also staffed. Call 973-377-0100 for non-emergency contacts. For emergencies, please call 9-1-1.

The compost/mulch area at Tanglewood Lane is open daily for residents wishing to bring yard waste and debris for disposal.

The emergency squad building at Spring Street across from Colony Pool is open daily for anyone needing a comfort break and to charge cell phones, laptops, etc.

The Library on Main Street is also open 9:30 a.m. until 9 p.m.

If you have not yet registered for NIXLE alerts, please do so at NIXLE.Com. You can receive alerts through your cell phone and email. The Police have been sending regular updates and the service is free.

BERKELEY HEIGHTS

Schools will be closed again on Thursday.

Mayor Joe Bruno reports that the downtown has had its power restored, as has town hall, which is once again open.

The warming and charging station at the Summit Middle School is a regional center and is available to all citizens who do not have power.

SUMMIT

Schools will be closed again on Thursday.

Most of Summit’s business community is operating. Many other areas of town are still without power, and Mayor Jordan Glatt is urging everyone to be careful around any downed wires.

The warming and charging station at the Summit Middle School is a regional center and is available to all citizens who do not have power.

The YMCA in Summit is offering its shower facilities to all residents who don’t have hot water.

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