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Split Schedule for Little Silver Schools Monday

Point Road School remains closed following electrical issues this weekend.

Living in a post-Sandy world has required a large degree of flexibility, as we've learned to read by flashlight, wait on long gas lines and subsist on peanut butter sandwiches. Now, Little Silver students get to add one more item to that list: split sessions at Markham Place starting on Monday.

Plans to reopen both schools Nov. 12 were waylaid when a smoking electrical panel at Point Road School early Saturday morning forced district administrators to keep the elementary school closed and move all students to the middle school on a split session, according to Little Silver Superintendent of Schools Dr. Carolyn Kossack.

"I understand the frustration of having to resort to a split schedule, but the children have been out of school for two weeks, and we must return them to an instructional program, even if it is a modified day," Kossack wrote in a letter to parents on Sunday.

Repairs to underground wiring at Point Road will require a crane  and a follow-up inspection by the power company, according to Kossack, who holds out hope that students can resume schedules at both schools as early as Tuesday.

Other details outlined in Kossack's letter are as follows:

Duration of School Day

  • Markham Place students will attend school from 8 a.m. – noon
  • Point Road Students in grades 1-4 will attend school from noon – 4 p.m.
  • AM Preschool and AM Kindergarten will attend school from noon – 2 p.m.
  • PM Preschool and PM Kindergarten will attend school from 2  – 4 p.m.
  • All Point Road Students will enter the Markham Place School directly into the gymnasium. There will be two doors open for entry.

Lunch

  • Lunch will not be served. If students typically bring a snack, they can do so.

Drop-Off/Pick-Up Locations & Traffic Patterns

  • The teachers who typically park in the lower lot near the tennis courts are being relocated. Therefore, that parking lot will be used for drop-off and pick-up.
  • Markham Place will be open for one-way traffic only heading west-bound (from Prospect to Branch Ave). Parents will be permitted to park on both sides of the road for drop-off and pick up but students MUST cross in the crosswalks only.
  • North Lovett will also be one-way traffic (from Markham Place to Rumson Road). Teachers who have been displaced from the lower parking lot as well as Point Road teachers who are carpooling from the Point Road lot will be permitted to park in no parking zones on North Lovett.
  • Parents PLEASE don’t park on North Lovett as our teachers need to park there and on Cross Street. There will also be drop-off and pick-up in the designated spots directly in front of Markham Place as usual.
  • There will be no drop-off or pick-up in the horseshoe.

Transportation

  • There will be no transportation for Markham Place students.
  • All Point Road students who typically have transportation will have transportation. That is, Students in grades 1-4 who typically ride the bus will be transported to and from school.
  • AM Kindergarten will have transportation in and parents will pick up at 2:00 PM. PM Kindergarten will have transportation both to and from school.
  • Parents are asked to please have their children at their bus stops at the same time intervals they would normally wait (i.e. if they are outside 30 minutes before the start of school – have them outside 30 minutes early tomorrow).
  • For students that walk, crossing guard schedules are being adjusted accordingly.

Municipal Cleaning

  • The Borough has been working hard to clean up brush. Tomorrow, they will begin having trucks pick up large debris that is piled curbside. Please keep that in mind if your child walks to school.

Emotional Support for Students

  • The day has been planned to allow for an extended CPR (Circle of Power and Respect) at Markham Place and an extended Morning Meeting for the Point Road students. The Guidance Counselors and Child Study team have created a plan to assist teachers and a plan is in place to provide additional counseling to students as needed.

After Care

  • Point Road typically has aftercare until 6 p.m.. The YMCA will provide aftercare from 4 - 6 p.m. in the cafetorium at Markham Place for those students that typically attend. Parents can enter through the front door at Markham Place to pick up your children.

School Schedule this Week

  • The school published calendar indicated that we would have full days Monday-Wednesday this week followed by early dismissals on Thursday and Friday because of Parent-Teacher conferences. I’m assuming that parents anticipated that schedule and at this time we plan to proceed with that schedule. We absolutely need to push back the close of the first marking period and report cards, therefore, conferences will be held prior to report cards. Information regarding Tuesday’s schedule (full or split schedule) will be forthcoming on Monday.

School Calendar for the Remainder of the Year

  • I will be meeting with the other Superintendents on the peninsula on Wednesday. Our calendars are quite similar so we will begin to coordinate our revised schedules for the year and a letter will be forthcoming this week.
LittleS November 12, 2012 at 12:17 PM
Ae you kidding me???? They are keeping the half days? No one cares about the loss of instructional time??? These kids won't have any true learning until January at this point. They were just home for two weeks!
LSParent November 12, 2012 at 12:38 PM
Dr. Kossack was dealt a tough hand, but she has not handled it well. Many children have two working parents. It is inconsiderate to tell working parents at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon that they need to find chldcare for their children the next day, and that they will be making decisions on a "day to day" basis. I don't know any child care providers that I can call on 12 hours notice to arrange 4 hours of morning childcare. If YMCA is going to be offering aftercare from 4-6, why not have grades 1-4 go to school 8-12, and have child care in the afternoon, or why not offer pre-care? Does Dr. Kossack believe that the 1st graders whose parents need 4-6 aftercare, do not need help from 8-12? Monmouth Beach whose schools were totally ruined, was able to keep parents informed and put together a schedule last week, but LIttle SIlver can't get out of its own way. Dr. Kossack should tender her resignation immediately.
Point Road School Parent November 12, 2012 at 12:59 PM
I agree with the above: - Dr. Kossack should resign today!!! How does that make sense to send the younger kids - Kindergarten through 4th grade - late in the day? and the older students early? Who made this decision? And what about working parents?! What are they going to do?
Point Road School Parent November 12, 2012 at 01:02 PM
Also, if they have early dismissal Thursday and Friday, what does that mean for the afternoon session of the split schedule if Point Road is still closed?
John Anderson November 12, 2012 at 01:22 PM
Agreed. She should resign immediatly. She is supposed to be a leader especially in time of crisis. But the lack of communication has been unacceptable.
LittleS November 12, 2012 at 01:29 PM
People, let's be reasonable here. Yes, the day by day information was less than desirable. But this woman does not need to resign over it. But she should reconsider te half day proposal on Thursday-next Tuesday. We don't need conferences. We need our children to be learning.
unhappy in LS November 12, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Why did it take the school 2 weeks to assess the situation? Families that lost their homes and that had considerable damage were able to get in and start what needed to done. Why not the school? Are our children not a priority? Maybe the school was doing something but there was no communication if that was the case.
Point Road School Parent November 12, 2012 at 01:34 PM
LSmom, Less desirable??? Are you a stay-at-home mom? That is the only way you could think that a day by day schedule is acceptable. How would you feel if all the working parents dropped their kids off at your house?!
LittleS November 12, 2012 at 01:37 PM
No, I agree with you! I just don't think she needs to resign over it.
Pam November 12, 2012 at 06:29 PM
I think Dr. Kossack is doing a fine job and these are extraordinary times. Many of us have had to take our children to work the past two weeks and make last minute plans. Most employers are understanding. We have had a ton of Two River Alerts keeping us informed. We all need patience and understanding of the situation.
James November 12, 2012 at 07:15 PM
Stating the Superintendent should resign over the issue at hand gives you no credibility in this discussion. I am COMPLETELY frustrated with the lack of communication on both the school's and Mayor's office the last two weeks, but let's be reasonable. To hold conferences WITHOUT report cards after the two weeks lost is just unthinkable. I think reinstating these days as full days is the ONLY choice and schedule parent-teacher conferences for those parents who are interested. Considerign the circumstances, I ams ure many parents woudl rather wait until January/February to meet with their child's teacher for a general discussion of their progress.
Pam November 12, 2012 at 07:37 PM
Are you signed up for "Two River Alert"? I received about four text messages a day from the borough, the schools, or the police informing me about what was going on. I signed up on the borough website. If you are not signed up then you would not have gotten these text messages but if you did sign up, the communication was abundant.
Irene November 12, 2012 at 11:38 PM
To say she should resign is absurd. This has been a extremely difficult situation for everyone and a dynamic one and that. I’m quite sure Dr. Kossack could not foresee an electrical fire situation in the school over the weekend. She is making difficult decisions, which also involve input from the Borough’s officials, utility companies, the police, and other emergency resources. I agree with James and Pam, Dr. Kossack is doing a good job during extraordinary times and your assertion she should resign gives you no credibility in this conversation and only highlights your shortsightedness of the situation.

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