Princeton Public Schools officials revise fall reentry plan

The Princeton Public Schools released a revised proposed fall reentry plan Monday, six days after sharing an initial proposed plan with parents.

Students will not begin the school year in Princeton until Monday, Sept. 14.

Under the new proposed plan, most students will be transported home at 1 p.m. daily, with the exception of pre-kindergarten students and students in self-contained special education classes, who will be bused home at 3 p.m. School officials said they investigated all options with the district’s contracted bus service provider, but there is no option for split session bus transportation. Officials said siblings will be transported at the same hours when possible.

In-person schooling for most students will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. From 1 to 3 p.m., teachers will provide online contact and instruction to remote learners. District officials said the remote afternoon component enables teachers to hold students accountable for their remote learning assignments from earlier in the day and to assess their progress.

No lunch will be served for grades six through 12. School officials said this will eliminates challenges related to distancing and mask-wearing
during meals. In elementary schools, lunch will take place outside in good weather. When the weather is bad, students will eat in their classrooms.

After-school activities, clubs, and events won’t resume until January of 2021.

Pre-K students will attend school five days per week with a 3 p.m. dismissal on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. On Wednesdays, in-person instruction will end at 1 p.m., but remote schooling will continue until 3 p.m. District officials said grant requirements dictate that pre-K students receive five full days of schooling per week. Staff members will wear masks, and district officials are encouraging parents to have all children wear face coverings. Preschoolers will ride buses separate from their older schoolmates.

For grades kindergarten through five, half of the students will attend school in person on Monday and Tuesday and learn remotely the rest of the week. The other half of the students will attend school in person Thursday and Friday and learn remotely the rest of the week. In-person days will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Teachers will interact with their remote learners daily between dismissal and 3 p.m. Special Education pupils in self-contained classes will attend school five days per week, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesdays. Officials said learning for most pupils will be remote on Wednesdays to allow custodial staff to sanitize classrooms and common spaces before a new group
arrives. Deep cleaning will also take place on Saturdays. Officials also said having one remote learning day will help teachers and students become accustomed to all-day remote schooling in case schools must be closed due to COVID-19 or flu infections.

Children in grades six through 12 will alternate weeks in school. Half of the students will attend school Monday through Thursday one week. The other half will attend school Monday through Thursday the following week. School will be dismissed at 1 p.m. Teachers will interact with their remote learners from 1 to 3 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays.

All students in grades six through 12 will be taught remotely on Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. so that custodial staff can sanitize the schools. District officials said the weekly model provides more continuity of instruction, particularly for long-term projects and lab experiments, and said the weekly model also enhances school officials’ abilities to determine if students develop adverse health symptoms.

District officials said each school will implement safety protocols to keep students socially distanced during physical transitions into and out of
school buildings and from one classroom to another. In the elementary schools, teachers will come to pupils’ classrooms to reduce mass movement through halls. The middle school and high school will use block schedules and a staggered passing time to minimize the number of students in hallways during
transitions. Teachers can also use outdoor spaces for classroom instruction.

Students, parents, staff, and community members can submit questions and feedback about the proposed plan to communications@princetonk12.org. The school board will vote on the plan at its online public meeting on July 28. The district must submit a final proposed plan to the state by Aug. 3.


  1. How could a smart community like Princeton do this to the teachers? I know there was already one case last year of a teacher getting seriously ill from COVID-19. Our teachers deserve better than this.

  2. Might it be possible for the Middle and High schoolers also to start the day later – if they are only going to go to school for 5 hours, wouldn’t it be better if the five hours started at 10 a.m. Adolescents are better later in the day and it seems kind of like they might get a better education if instead of an 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. schedule it were 11 to 4 … Can this be considered for Middle and High School and maybe the no after school sports or clubs might be a good excuse to test a later academic day.. .

  3. It could for middle and high school be totally remote through the end of 2002 and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. -testing this innovation of a later academic day for teens and pre-teens… based on their natural modern (Middle Schoolers didn’t really exist in the 19th C in the U.S. ) sleep schedules … It seems like totally remote for the older ones (non-elementary) might be a good idea though the end of 2020. Why not- Push the teachers to innovate but remotely… do not ask them or the parents to risk health.. without really innovating on education..

  4. Really it seems like it would be better for the Middle School and older -for middle and high schoolers -to learn 100 percent remotely through the EOY 2020. It is asking too much of parents and teachers to put themselves and their children at risk this way as well as others at risk … The schools and teachers should able to perform for students and the community remotely… Let them be given he chance to rise properly to the occasion … It is really concerning this pushing in a half-axxed way to get them into buildings… that are probably not safe y et… especially for the older children – middle and high-schoolers…

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