Section 2001(i)(1) of the American Rescue Plan Act requires each school district that receives American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) funds to develop and make publicly available on the LEA’s website, no later than 30 days after receiving ARP ESSER funds, a plan for the safe return to in-person instruction and continuity of services for all schools (Safe Return Plan) A Safe Return Plan is required of all fund recipients, including those that have already returned to in-person instruction.
Pursuant to those requirements, school districts must submit to the NJDOE and post on their website their Safe Return Plans by June 24, 2021. To assist the development of the Safe Return Plans, the NJDOE provided a template. This template incorporates the federally-required components of the Safe Return Plan.
Note that on May 17, 2021, Governor Murphy announced that upon the conclusion of the 2020-2021 school year, portions of Executive Order 175 allowing remote learning will be rescinded, meaning that schools will be required to provide full-day, in-person instruction, as they were prior to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency.
The NJDOE and New Jersey Department of Health will share additional information regarding State requirements or guidance for health and safety protocols for the 2021-2022 school year as it becomes available.
The NJDOE and the NJDOH have not released information yet about requirements for the 2021-2022 school year. Once this information is released we will review and incorporate it into our return to plans.