Remote Learning for Week After Thanksgiving

Danielle Ricketts, News Editor


West Haven public schools will be shifting to remote learning for the week after Thanksgiving as the district deals with staffing shortages and concerns that the holiday will result in more positive cases.

If all goes well, school will be reopened on Dec. 7. In-person learning has been available from Monday Nov. 23  to Wednesday Nov. 25.

“I am optimistic that the week we have scheduled for remote learning will allow us to return to school on Dec. 7, that we are fully staffed, and most importantly, both students and staff remain healthy and ready to return,” Superintendent Neil Cavallaro said in a letter to the community.

Cavallaro said in his letter that the last several weeks have been “quite hectic and challenging to say the least,” as the district has had to quarantine teachers, students, support staff, and, at times, entire classes.

While all students are distance learning, the same three-block schedule will be used, during which teachers will actively engage with students, Principal Dana Paredes said in a letter to parents. This means that all students must be present during class, as attendance will be taken. If there is a reason a student cannot attend class the teacher should be notified so suitable arrangements can be made.

If any student needs additional support from teachers, that will be available every day from 12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m.

The school’s social workers are hosting a Social Emotional Learning period from 1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. each day to give strategies that will help students cope during this stressful time. These can be with a group, or one-on-one by appointment. The Google Classroom code for this is whnx7rf.

It was recognized that these services will be needed during these difficult times to preserve students’ mental and emotional health.

“Many students who have never dealt with anxiety or depression are experiencing those feelings this year,” Mrs. Paredes wrote.

The School-Based Health Center will stay open while distance learning is taking place. Appointments can be made through PowerSchool forms.

One student said he understands and agrees with the district’s decision, despite this being his senior year, the year many students look forward to the most.

“I’d rather be safe at home than contributing to the pandemic without even knowing it,” senior Jaden Perez said. “It’s the hard choice, but it’s the right choice.”