JERSEY CITY, NJ - A survey of Jersey City teachers indicated that more than 200 of the district’s 3,000 teachers may not be willing to enter classrooms in September due to COVID-19 concerns. The district conducted a survey to see how many teachers intended to return either through in class teaching or distance learning.

Slightly more than half the total teachers responded to the survey, district officials said, with many saying that seek to leave to retire. About 40 percent of the teachers responding to the survey said they would like to teach through distance learning. This could have a significant impact on a district already facing serious fiscal shortfalls that could result in increased class sizes.

Although Gov. Phil Murphy and the state Department of Education want all school districts to offer at least some in-person learning for the 2020-2021 school year, legislation sponsored by Assembly members Mila Jasey, Pamela Lampitt and Joann Downey would keep schools shut until at least November and mandate distance learning instead with only special education and related services exempt.

“Next week the administration will be presenting the reopening plan,” said Board of Education President Lorenzo Richardson. “I spoke with (School Superintendent) Walker briefly about what is being taken into consideration at our recent meeting. If the legislature passes the bill being proposed, this will be moot.”