Superintendent Reveals New Virtual Learning Requirements


Wayne Schools Superintendent Mark Toback at a Board of Education Meeting

By Ricardo Montanez, Staff Writer

COVID is at an all time high right now, which means Wayne Schools must be as cautious as possible. With changes like classrooms being required to keep the windows open as well as enhanced cleaning, the district also extends the requirements to be virtually learning.

From when school first started, the only way you can virtually attend class was if you were exposed to COVID-19 or you had it, these were the requirements until around January 4th. On January 5th, 2022, the Wayne Public Schools superintendent Mark Toback sent a public letter giving multiple new requirements to be virtually learning. These requirements include, awaiting a test or a test result after suspected exposure to COVID-19, Tested positive for COVID-19, Experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, and Quarantined for being identified as a close contact.

Although there are all these new requirements, the choice of solely being all virtual is not a possible choice for parents. The new requirements are meant to sort of prevent that option and keep students in school throughout the year. The district will also still be following the 10 day Quarantine since the start of the school year. 

The reason for such add-ons to the schools COVID-19 guidelines can most likely be from everyone coming back from holiday break. From everyone seeing families from different states and even countries, the exposure was most likely at its peak, making COVID spread like wildfire once everyone returned from break. 

“Schools should be doing whatever they can to try to keep kids in school whether that would be shortening the school day to reduce contact or tightening testing regulations,” said junior Benjamin Prusakowski. 

In addition, Governor Murphy announced on January 10th that New Jersey schools will continue it’s mask mandate and it doesn’t seem to be lifted anytime soon.

“I want to be clear…that the mask mandates in schools and daycares will continue at least for the foreseeable future,” the governor said during his latest COVID briefing in Trenton. “These requirements give us no joy but are the only responsible course of action at this time.”

As shown from the letter and the recent announcement from the governor, it seems the township as well as the state as a whole is doing everything in their ability to maintain schools and keep students in school. This leaves some questioning if we will ever be all-virtual and more specifically, and what’s the township’s limit?