BRIDGEWATER, NJ - In accordance with the newest directive from Gov. Phil Murphy, all Bridgewater-Raritan schools will continue on distance learning until at least May 18.

Murphy announced April 17 that all schools will be closed through May 15, and an evaluation will be made again about opening closer to that date.

Superintendent Russell Lazovick released a statement following the announcement to keep families apprised of how the district will continue school through the next month.

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The academic calendar, Lazovick said, will remain the same for the rest of the school year.

“This means that as we approach give-back days, if we have not had to close for emergent reasons, these days will become days that we are off,” he said. “There will be no distance learning in this case.”

Those days include May 1, May 27 and June 5.

Each will be confirmed through separate emails, Lazovick said.

In addition, Lazovick said, it is time to start addressing upcoming events that are usually held at the end of the year.

Lazovick said at the April 14 board of education meeting that they are dealing with school in two-week chunks, and are looking at potential alternatives for end of the year events, including prom and graduation, while also being mindful of deposits being due for venues and reservations that need to be made in advance.

“We are doing all we can to find different ways to maintain these events, including field trips as well as the celebrations and ceremonies that are a long-standing part of our district and our community,” he said in his statement April 17.

Lazovick said administrators are currently working with staff, and sometimes students, to identify and plan alternative ways to honor the district’s traditions and provide current students with the chance to enjoy the events they have long been looking forward to.

“Every effort will be made to hold our special events in the safest and most inclusive ways possible,” he said.

Lazovick noted that due to contract and safety issues, some things may have to be canceled completely, but parents will receive direct communication from the school or organization as that happens.

Lazovick noted that the district is continuing to deliver food to qualified families. Anyone who has had a change in a financial situation due to the crisis should visit https://www.brrsd.org/parents/food-service.

In addition, Lazovick reminded families that all district facilities remain closed to the public, and people are asked not to use any outdoor equipment, including playgrounds.

“We know that outdoor activity during this time is needed,” he said. “We encourage it for you and your families, but please remember to follow social distancing.”

“Further, the district is not cleaning outdoor equipment,” he added. “Following the recommendations from our health offices, contact with objects like these has been deemed not safe at this time.”

Students and families are reminded to stay home as much as possible and pay attention to themselves and their loved ones. District resources are available on the distance learning webpage.

“This is a difficult situation, but we will get through it together,” Lazovick said. “Thanks for making B-R such an incredible community.”