BREAKING: New Jersey Schools Closed Through End Of The School Year
New Jersey’s Governor Phil Murphy announced on Monday that all schools in New Jersey will remain closed for in-person instruction through the end of the academic year.
The governor shared the news on Twitter ahead of a 12-noon press conference:
"Guided by safety and science, this is the best course of action," the governor said in the tweet.
"I had hoped that we could get back to a sense of normal, but the reality is that we cannot safely re-open our schools," Murphy said during Monday's press conference.
The governor said that state officials will work with local district officials to find a safe plan to honor the class of 2020 with a possible graduation ceremony. No statewide decisions have been made regarding graduation ceremonies at this time.
Additionally, spring sports will NOT resume this school year, based on a decision from the NJSIAA.
The Department of Education will be holding stakeholder meetings on potential summer programs and the reopening of buildings for the 2020-2021 school year.
"There is a lot to consider about how the school day may differ when our students and faculty return (for the 2020-2021 school year), the governor said.
This decision affects more than 1.3 million students in both private and public schools across the state. Schools in Pennsylvania and New York have already closed their schools through the end of the 2020-2021 academic year.
Previously, the state’s closure announcement shut private and public schools through “at least May 15.” When making the announcement back in mid-April, Murphy basically said that state officials were buying time before a decision on the remainder of the school year.
When asked by a reporter in April about the possibility of students wearing masks when in-person classes do finally resume, Murphy indicated that it was his personal opinion students would be required to wear masks in the classroom.
"I'm giving you a personal opinion on kids wearing masks, but that would be my guess," Murphy said. "That's an opinion, not a mandate."
This is a developing story. We'll have more details when they're made available during the press conference.