UPDATE: ADDED ROBBINSVILLE AND HAMILTON TWP SCHOOLS UPDATE TO BOTTOM OF THIS ARTICLE RATHER THAN START AN ADDITIONAL POST SEE BELOW:
March 11, 2020
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–On Tuesday, March 10, 2020, Robbinsville Township and the West Windsor Health Department released a statement informing the community of an active public health investigation involving an office site located in Robbinsville Township.
A non-government employee of that office, which is not a municipal building, tested presumptive positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus). Test results from the New Jersey State lab are deemed presumptive until confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The West Windsor Health Department, which serves Robbinsville, is working with other health agencies in investigating a clearly defined group of people who came in contact with this individual, who is an employee of Mercer Bucks Cardiology-Jefferson University Hospitals at 1 Union Street in Robbinsville.
The male individual, who recently traveled to Italy, was asymptomatic when he returned to the workplace for one day on March 3, 2020. On March 4, the individual developed mild symptoms and did not return to the workplace. The practice closed the office immediately, advised staff to self-quarantine at home and implemented an enhanced cleaning process. The office remains closed.
The West Windsor Health Department was notified of the presumptive positive case of COVID-19 on Tuesday, March 10 and immediately took appropriate protective measures to prevent the spread of the virus. As an added precaution, building management is currently performing enhanced cleaning of the building’s common areas.
The Robbinsville OEM, Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried and the West Windsor Township Health Department are dedicated to stopping the spread of COVID-19 and are working with dedicated teams of local, state and federal officials to ensure a safe community.
March 11, 2020
Dear Parents and Community Members,
As we continue to take a proactive and precautionary approach, we have decided to cancel some larger scale school-related events so we can focus on keeping our buildings clean and healthy for student learning during the day. We will monitor these decisions as necessary; therefore, as of this date we are cancelling events through March 21, 2020.
Again, we are actively communicating with our local health officials to guide us in our decision making. As we work through this challenge, please know we will provide updates as new information is available.
Please see the following events that will be cancelled and rescheduled if possible.
March 11th: Third Grade Recorder Concert, SES, 7 pm
March 13th: Fifth Grade Social, Pond, 7-9 pm
March 14th & 15th: FIRST Robotics Competition
March 15th: RHS Trivia Night, RHS, 4:30-8 pm
March 16th: Attitudes in Reverse Parent Education Night for grades 7-12, RHS, 7 pm
March 18th: Child Assault Prevention Program for First Grade Parents, 7 pm
March 20th: Sixth Grade Social, Pond, 7-9 pm
As always, we thank you for your support and partnership.
Kathie Foster, Superintendent
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP SCHOOLS:
Hamilton Township School District Coronavirus Preparedness
Hamilton, NJ. In the last week, the Hamilton Township School District (HTSD) participated in a number
of conference calls with the New Jersey Department of Health, as well as the New Jersey Department of
Education (NJDOE). The culmination of these meetings have allowed us to coordinate efforts regarding
educating our students should a school or schools be required to close by order of the New Jersey
Department of Health or the Hamilton Township Department of Health. It is important to note, that NO
school district may “independently” make the decision to close and have that day count toward the 180
day requirement. Only in the event that a school district has a written directive from the Department of
Health to close, can the day be counted if instruction is provided.
If HTSD were required to close a school or the district by order of the New Jersey Department of Health
or Local Health Department, and our preparedness plan was implemented, remote learning from our
students’ homes would count toward the required 180 days of school. Departments, schools and
employees have worked together to develop plans and resources for instruction and operations of the
district. The Department of Curriculum and Instruction is currently working with the Department of
Student Services and our professional teaching staff to ensure that the needs of all learners are
addressed within this plan. Our Business office is currently developing the necessary provisions for
school nutrition planning with our Food Service Provider (as required).
Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Scott Rocco, explained that, “the NJDOE has issued guidance on ‘remote
learning’. The term remote learning is important because it takes into account that not all families have
the ability to connect to the Internet through a device, if a school or schools need to be closed. On
Monday, March 9th, building principals designated a time to ask students if they have a device and
Internet access at home. This information was vital to the development of our remote learning plans.”
The survey reported that approximately 87% of students have both a device and online access at home.
At this time, HTSD has a systematic framework for preparedness planning aligned to expectations of
the NJDOE, and we are finalizing the document for submission to the Mercer County Executive
County Superintendent. With this framework, our professional staff and administration are working
collaboratively to develop a series of “remote” learning opportunities for our students that will offer a
combination of on-line activities as well as traditional instructional activities (as required).
Within the schools, HTSD continues to implement an enhanced daily cleaning and sanitizing plan.
This cleaning uses a combination of both mechanical and chemical cleaning phases that are focused
on common touch points including door knobs, sinks, water fountains, computer keyboards, student
desks, chairs, cafeteria tables, chairs, etc. Additionally, we have deployed more hand sanitizer
dispensers throughout our facilities in order to provide our students and staff with continuous access
to disinfectants as needed.
On March 2, 2020, HTSD established a webpage entitled Coronavirus Information on the district’s
website and each school’s webpage. This page is continually updated with information and
correspondence from the district. In addition to information being provided on the new webpage, Dr.
Rocco has also communicated with faculty and staff through the district’s email system. One of the
many concerns being addressed is that HTSD understands that the news about COVID-19 may be
difficult for our children to hear and they may have many questions. HTSD offered the following
resource from the National Association of School Psychologists on Talking to Children about
COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource. This resource offered guidelines on talking to children
about the coronavirus.
Moving forward, HTSD encourages our school community to:
• visit our website for updates as more information becomes available;
• follow our Social Media feeds for updates @WeAreHTSD on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram;
• update their contact information on the School Messenger and Parent Portal systems. If you
have not already completed the HTSD Back To School Portal, please make sure to do so by
following the directions here. We highly recommend that all parents/guardians provide their
email and opt-in for district text updates;
• cover your cough and sneeze into your sleeve (not your hands);
• avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth (if possible);
• wash your hands often with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds, especially if you are
coughing or sneezing.
Please know that there is nothing more important to us than ensuring the health, safety and security
of our students, faculty, and staff. We will continue to collaborate effectively with our Township and
State Health Departments. We look forward to continuing to partner with our community members and
will provide additional updates and information as it becomes available.
If you have any questions or concerns about this information please contact Laura Geltch. We thank
you for your continued support and partnership.
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