Hurricane Sandy Update from Superintendent Crisfield, Friday, 4:30 p.m.

MILLBURN, NJ - Dr. James Crisfield, Superintendent of the Millburn Public Schools, has just released the following update:

"I have a sliver of optimism to share!  It is confirmed that about 10% or so of the township has had power restored.   It's a start...  No schools are back up yet, but they will be part of the power company's methodical approach to getting everyone back to full power.  No better forecast yet in terms of WHEN, but we are finally making progress.

Here are some other tidbits for your planning purposes:

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**Regarding school next week, we ARE going to try to have school on both Thursday and Friday (if not sooner).  We have come to an agreement with the teachers and they are very anxious to help in any way they can, which I greatly appreciate.  Of course, all plans for reopening school depend on power and gasoline availability, which we will monitor closely over the weekend.  More updates on that front to come.  Schools will also be as flexible as possible in terms of students (or staff) being absent for one reason or another.  We want to get back to normal as much as possible, but we certainly recognize the large variety of individual circumstances out there.  We will work with you!

**There will be no K-5 lunch programs operating next week, so please plan on sending lunch in with your student.  There will also be no milk available.  We are confirming plans at Middle School and MHS and will relay that information as soon as we get it.

**There are many activities such as interscholastic sports and the fall musical at MHS that are posing quite a scheduling challenge.  We are looking at options now and will report back as soon as we have answers.  Postponements/rescheduling are both possible, but nothing is finalized yet.  This one is much more complicated than it might appear, and Dr. Miron and his staff have their work cut out for them in this area, that's for sure!

**Regarding elections on Tuesday, the official plan is now to have all Millburn voting take place at the Temple B'nai Jeshurun on South Orange Avenue in town.  No schools will be used as a polling place.  This is a wise move, as parking would be very tight if school is in session, and we may have some roof repairs complicating matters as well.  The Township will very soon circulate more details about voting arrangements.

One last item in response to questions about what might be the best thing for students to do in terms of keeping up with academics while we are out.  Of course, as much as possible (and especially for our older students), they can follow some long-term assignments or guidance their teachers may have been able to distribute.  But perhaps a better and more simple approach, given all the dislocations we've experienced, would be to READ.  Just read.  Fun books are fine, too.  On vacation or at home, its simplicity and ease makes this a perfect solution, and anything that enhances literacy skills is only a plus academically.  And it works for students of all ages, too!  I have a big choice to make tonight--go with my favorite business author's latest (Jim Collins' Great by Choice) or go fiction and dig into the third book of the Game of Thrones series.  It's title is A Storm of Swords, so perhaps I ought to give into fate and choose it..."

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