These are unprecedented times. Even that’s an understatement — and I have been working in public education for four decades.

Everyone here at the New Jersey School Boards Association recognizes the incredible obstacles that are being faced by school boards, superintendents, teachers, other district personnel and the most important members of our education community — students.

On a regular basis, I’ve been talking with school leaders across the state, and I have been deeply impressed with their creativity, dedication and commitment as we endeavor to meet the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The good news is that the education of New Jersey’s 1.4 million public school students is continuing, even under these extreme circumstances.

To help you meet the challenges, NJSBA is maintaining all services to assist you in all areas of board governance and provide you with the information, guidance and resources you need to continue the business of educating our children.

Our field services, legal, policy and labor relations experts continue to be available every day to answer your questions. Our governmental relations team is monitoring all activities of the Legislature and representing the interests of local boards.

We continue to use all of our communications resources to inform you of the latest developments. We have instituted a COVID-19 Resource Center on our website which is updated daily.  The page provides guidance from state and federal agencies, answers to frequently asked questions, links to useful resources, and news from NJSBA. The COVID-19 webpage has received thousands of hits already.

In the current emergency, staying connected is critical. NJSBA has instituted a schedule of podcasts, Facebook Live events, and webinars to address the unique educational and governance issues resulting from the pandemic. Details about these programs and events are available at on our website and in our COVID-19 Resource Center. All programs are archived. So, if you can’t watch or listen to the live program, you can always catch up later.  Among the many topics covered in these programs: new Legislative proposals that affect school districts, a district’s successful efforts to meet the challenges of online instruction, internet access for all students during the crisis, and live question-and-answer sessions with NJSBA field service representatives, attorneys, and policy experts.

Our school districts, students and families are looking to us for direction, assurance and calm. Together, local boards, superintendents and district staff are ensuring that learning continues in spite of school closings. The New Jersey School Boards Association is here to support that work.

Lately I’ve noticed that when I speak with people, we tend to end a conversation by saying “Stay healthy.”  On behalf of everyone at NJSBA, I want to wish all of our readers good health, and extend our sincere thanks for the work you are doing to serve the students and families of New Jersey.

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