New Jersey school district to sue local teachers union over delayed in-person learning

MONTCLAIR, New Jersey (WABC) -- A school district in New Jersey is planning to sue the local teachers union in an effort to reopen for hybrid, in-class learning.

Montclair School District has been in a standoff with the Montclair Education Association after the district was forced to delay its plans to switch from all-remote learning.

The delay was caused when the district could not find enough teachers to return to class due to safety concerns over COVID-19.

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The Longwood School District in Suffolk County is now doubling its in-person learning this week amid reports from the CDC that it is safe.

The school district has been cancelled to in-person learning since last March, and were finally set to start their hybrid mode on January 25.

Montclair School Superintendent Dr. Jonathan Ponds released a statement Tuesday night in regards to the district's plan.

"When forced to make a decision between competing interests, I will always do what is best for our students," Ponds said. "I implore our teachers to return to the classroom for the benefit of our students, those who we have all been called to serve."

The Montclair Education Association quickly fired back in a statement, saying that the district's plan to reopen "fails to take into consideration the organizational needs of students, staff and parents regarding things like bussing schedules, cleaning and sanitizing needs, classroom rosters and which staff are staying remote for health reasons."

The statement goes on to say, "We have been sucker-punched by a district that cries wolf, when there are mounds of proof of the district's negligence in preparing buildings for students."

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