DENVILLE, NJ -- Superintendent Steven Forte gave his latest report on the COVID-19 status during the March 22 meeting of the Denville Township Board of Education. With all three public schools still remaining open for hybrid virtual and in-person instruction, there have been 10 current cases that tested positive with 83 people being quarantined district-wide.

“We have to get a hand on parents sending their kids to school when showing COVID symptoms and waiting test results,” said Forte.

“We want to keep the schools open and possibly extend the in-person instruction later in the year, but we are going to need the cooperation of the public to help get to that point. Our plan for Phase 2 would have to take place after at least two consecutive weeks and would have to be cleared by our head nurse, Department of Health, and our school physician. We will have some information coming. We are talking about it with the staff now. It would not be a full day. It would be an extended day, meaning there would be more in-person instruction, but not a full day. And today is the last day to inform your principal of whether or not you are going from virtual to in-person. And depending on how many students return back to school, and the new guidelines of social distancing, it may be difficult to maintain the six feet of social distancing in the classrooms.”

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Superintendent Forte said that schoolteachers and principals are working on possibly moving from classes into larger spaces or splitting up larger classes if needed. Furthermore, the township board is awaiting clarification about the new CDC guidelines on social distancing, which have not yet been adopted by the Denville Township Board of Health.

In other news, spring break will be April 2-11. There is consideration of a switch to full virtual learning following this break, but the board is waiting for possible changes to the travel quarantine. If lifted, the Denville schools most likely might not need to switch to virtual teaching following spring break.

Forte also mentioned that Valleyview basketball games had started that same day at Gardner Field, with 75 students signing up. Valleyview tryouts for baseball and softball will begin, also following spring break.

“The kids seem really happy so that is a big step forward,” said Forte.


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