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Hope For The Best, Plan For The Worst

This week Governor Cuomo announced that all schools in the state will remain closed through April 29. He also restated his decision to close schools every two weeks. Because the Governor has tied state aid to this order, schools are abiding by the two-week extensions and are not closing for longer periods of time.

Planning and predictability are two traits that every educator holds dear. We understand that the continuation of closing schools every two weeks can be maddening for educators, students and families. While we are hopeful and it would be wonderful to be back in school April 30, I have made the decision, as a district, we need to continue to hope for the best and plan for the worst.

At JPS we need to get our arms around the very real probability that schools will be closed for the balance of the school year. By planning for this possibility, it allows our teachers, students and families to structure their education for the “long haul” versus wondering every two weeks if schools will reopen.

Over the next 10 days the JPS administrative team will be creating a comprehensive plan for what education will look like for the balance of the school year. This plan will be shared with the Jamestown community on April 21. This plan will include information on:

¯ Criteria that will be used to determine who passes or fails a course.

¯ Tools parents can use to monitor their child(s) academic progress.

¯ Accessibility to student support and special education services.

¯ Obtaining curriculum and other resources for the balance of the year.

¯ Finalizing 2020-2021 student schedules.

JPS will abide by the governor’s order to be closed through April 29. We will continue to abide by his decisions to close every two weeks. However, while we hope to return to school sooner rather than later, it is important for predictability that we prepare to be closed through the end of the school year. Please visit www.jpsny.org frequently for more updates or send any questions you might have to questions@jpsny.org. Please keep well and know that JPS is here to help you through this time.

Dr. Bret Apthorpe is superintendent of the Jamestown Public Schools District.

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