The New Jersey School Boards Association on Aug. 31 released Choosing the Best ‘Road Back’ for Our Children,” the second in a series of special reports on education during the pandemic.

The centerpiece of the report is an advocacy agenda for public education during the pandemic, based on surveys of the NJSBA membership, interviews with local school district officials, Association policy, and research. The agenda calls for critical state and federal support for school districts as they restart the educational process. Initiatives include funding, assistance in securing personal protective equipment and technology, financial flexibility, and other critical changes.

“In the face of ever-changing, inconsistent and, often, inadequate state and federal guidance, school districts have performed admirably, moving forward with reopening plans to meet the needs of their students,” said Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod, NJSBA executive director.

The report also recounts developments since the state issued its initial guidance document in late June. It describes varied school restart plans developed by local districts, major challenges involved in implementing these plans, and issues that remain unresolved. The report also summarizes school reopening plans in nearby states and the experience of other nations.

“COVID-19 has altered the lives of our students and their families, as well as the governance of public education” said Feinsod. “Since the spring, NJSBA has committed its resources to helping local boards of education meet these challenges through training, advocacy and direct services. This report is an important part of our efforts.

“Going forward, we sincerely believe that our series of special reports will inform public policy on education during the pandemic and beyond.”

The special report can be accessed at the following URL: