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State sneers that Curley shutdown is school's own fault, but will be gracious and not totally screw kids by forcing them to make up all the closure days with extra in-school classes

WBZ reports state education Secretary Jeffrey Riley has ruled that students at the Curley School in Jamaica Plain will have to make up three days of in-class learning because school and Boston officials decided to close the school to combat a Covid-19 outbreak without getting final permission from the state.

BPS had asked the state to let it count seven days of online learning towards the 180 days minimum of classroom learning that the state requires when it shut the Curley on Tuesday for a total of ten days, sending students home with Chromebooks to switch to online classes.

Riley dismissed what BPS officials said was an urgent need to shut the entire school down this week, saying that maybe if BPS had listened to state officials, it could have nipped the problem in the bud by "quarantining individual classrooms or grade levels."

At a Tuesday meeting with parents, school and city health officials said that while that had worked with outbreaks at the Manning and Orchard Gardens schools, the Curley outbreak spread so quickly that it was affecting large numbers of classrooms across the entire school, leaving them little chance but to shut down - in part to try to dampen the spread, in part to beef up resources for additional testing and contact tracing,

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Comments

JFC. Does BPS need to get “final permission from the state” to evacuate a school if it’s on fire?

Micromanage much?

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Voting closed 6

Massachusetts public school pupils are entitled to 180 days of school. BPS can shut down, but it’s DESE’s call if they count the in-person days lost to the shutdown against the 180 days.

Like snow days. BPS can call a snow day without asking for permission, but they have to then add another day to make up for it.

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Voting closed 8

You could have ended it right there. Now Get Off My Lawn!

/s

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Stop it a Covid outbreak isn't a fire and isn't managed like one. A phone call could have easily been made.

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Voting closed 6

BPS screwed this one up. They knew that had a rapid rise in cases there. They didn't inform parents of the scale of this even though they knew a week before shutting the school down. The superintendent admitted BPS doesn't have the capacity to test and trace to keep the kids safe. How that wasn't worked out beforehand I'll never understand. Riley is a stooge but he's more right than wrong on this one.

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Voting closed 6

BPS does have some fault, but Riley has a LOT more fault here than not- they forced every district to take remote learning off the table, whether there was the ability to test and trace or not. They knew there was no way to keep staff and students safe on the scale needed without remote learning options, but they didn't allow any leeway for districts or even give proper direction on what to do in these situations. I guarantee you BPS isn't the only district with outbreaks like this, but rather than step up and close, most are straight up lying to parents and staff since they don't have a back up plan if there's an outbreak. I know of at least three schools in different districts with multiple cases while the 'official' case count remains at zero for the school. Riley and Baker do not give a rat's behind if there are outbreaks, they just want the appearance that everything is back to normal.

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So Brenda Casellius announced a knee-jerk decision without thinking it through or discussing it with the appropriate stakeholders and now BPS kids and families are paying the price? I’m shocked!

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Neglected to make use of the safe routes to school program and it's resources that were being offered at the beginning of the pandemic and they still haven't leveraged the proper resources thereto. So for all intent and purposes the Massachusetts department of education CAN SUCK IT because all of last year they never consulted with this free resources offered by the federal gov and MASSDOT, choosing instead to make an ineffectual task force.

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