South Hadley High School requests more remote learning days for students

Hampshire County

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (WWLP) – The South Hadley school district has requested more remote learning days for South Hadley High School students as the building continues to undergo mold mitigation and testing. 

In a letter Tuesday to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Superintendent Dr. Jahmal Mosley requested two additional days for remote learning to allow more areas in the building to be cleaned and tested.  

“With the 5-day remote learning deadline approaching and more cleaning and testing needing to be done, the district finds itself in the worst-case scenario as outlined in page 12 in the original waiver request. The building is not currently suitable for staff and student occupancy.” 

Dr. Jahmal Mosley, Superintendent of South Hadley Public Schools

Last week, the DESE approved five days of remote learning for high school students, which would end Wednesday, September 22. In the new request, Dr. Mosley asked that the date be extended to Friday, September 24. 

Students at South Hadley High School finished their fourth day of remote learning Tuesday afternoon. Wednesday is day five, the final day approved by the state’s Education Department. It’s likely the district will ask the department of education for more remote learning days if the school isn’t safe by Thursday.

22News spoke with a parent from Chicopee who’s relieved her kids were able to start their school year on schedule. Yvette Laurent said, “I wouldn’t be happy right now. My daughter is so excited that she’s back in school. I think any more remote learning could put kids into a really difficult position in their headsets.”

When students will return to the classroom isn’t the only unknown. The district will also have to determine how those first few weeks of classes will be made up.

Another letter to DESE by the school district, dated September 13, requested remote learning on weekend days in September, October and December. Those days would be counted “towards recovering the eight days lost as a result of the mold remediations,” Dr. Mosley said in the request. 

Weekend days requested:

  • September 25
  • October 2
  • October 16
  • October 30
  • November 6
  • November 20
  • December 4
  • December 16

Allison Schlachter, Chairwoman on the South Hadley School Committee said, “The school department and the union will have to form an agreement on when those days can be made up. It gets complicated when you’re adding days to the calendar that weren’t there to begin with, because you’re talking about people needing to be in the building, running the building.”

Students need 180 days of school and teachers are required to have 184. 22News has reached out to DESE for a statement. We’ll bring you an update when we hear back.

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