MONTVILLE, NJ – Montville Township public schools will be re-opening in September and Superintendent of Schools René Rovtar said in an email to parents that students might start back for early dismissal days on Sept. 8. Every day when students come home, they would have additional online learning, so as to have continuous instruction, the social and psychological benefits of being together with teachers, but eliminating the challenge of lunch. Rovtar asked parents to complete a survey regarding parents’ intentions to return to school by midnight on July 14.

This week Rovtar also notified parents that she is not yet recommending that coaches be reappointed for the fall sports season, because of colleges cancelling their seasons, and the possibility that salaries would have to be paid if sports is cancelled. Rovtar said that the NJ Legislature passed a bill that school districts have to pay salaries for individuals’ contracts whether or not the services are rendered, a figure that climbs to tens of thousands, plus the extra cost of pandemic protective measures.

“As superintendent, I have a responsibility to the students, staff members and parents of the Montville Township Public Schools but I also have a responsibility to the residents of Montville Township to be fiscally prudent,” she wrote. “For that reason, I cannot, in good conscience, obligate the district to potentially pay tens of thousands of dollars for services that may not be rendered. The board attorney has advised the district not to appoint coaches until further guidance regarding the likelihood that the fall season will run is received from the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.”

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Rovtar said that if guidelines are received from the NJSIAA at any time up to the scheduled board meeting on July 14, the board of education could take action to appoint the fall coaches. Those appointments would be effective immediately.

“I firmly believe that the most responsible course of action at this point is to wait for the receipt of the Phase II guidance from the NJSIAA. This results in minimal negative impact to the preparation of our athletes and protects the financial assets of the district,” she wrote.

Editor's Note: The NJSIAA issued updated guidance on the fall sports season on July 10. Read about it here.

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