NJ officials: In-person summer school can begin starting July 6

The New Jersey Department of Education Friday released guidance for school districts to conduct summer educational programming in-person, including extended school year programs.

“This is a crucial step that allows schools to plan summer learning programs and special education services that will provide assistance to those students who need it the most,” said Education Commissioner Lamont Repollet. “We’ve heard from countless parents and educators about the importance of summer learning and extended school year programs, especially now that so many students and families have faced unexpected obstacles with remote learning over the past three months. We believe schools can provide the necessary summer instruction while ensuring the safety of students and teachers, and their families.”

In-person programs are permitted to begin on or after July 6 and must follow various health and safety protocols. Districts that have planned for remote learning can still proceed with virtual instruction for the summer. Traditional summer school, extended school year programming with individualized instruction for students with special needs, credit-recovery programs that allow students to retake coursework or obtain credits needed for graduation, migrant education, programs for English language learners, community learning centers that offer enrichment during non-school hours, and any additional summer learning opportunities that school districts may need to address learning loss and prepare students for the coming school year are all allowed to operate this summer. 

On May 30, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 149, approving summer camps that “provide daily multi-hour programming for youths” to begin on or after July 6. Summer educational programs run by school districts, charter schools and renaissance schools fall under this definition of “summer camps,” state officials said.

School districts that want to operate modified in-person summer programs, or a combination of remote and in-person programs, must submit a form to the New Jersey Department of Health at least 24 hours prior to the anticipated opening date confirming that the school will follow applicable health and safety protocols.

The Summer Learning Resource Guide and Guidance on the Delivery of Extended School Year Services are available online on the New Jersey Department of Education website.