BURLINGTON, N.J. - Burlington Township public schools will shift to all remote learning beginning Monday, Nov. 30 through Jan. 21, district officials announced on Sunday.
The decision comes amid a surge of new coronavirus infections that elevated Burlington County into New Jersey's "high risk" category. Burlington health officials reported 205 new COVID-19 cases on Friday which pushed the county's overall total to more than 12,000.
"We believe our schools are safe, however, we know this is an unpredictable virus that incubates inside a host for up to 14 days," Superintendent Mary Ann Bell said. "By the time someone knows they may be infected, the virus may have unknowingly been passed to another person."
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Remote learning for over a month will allow students and staff to be apart for 2 weeks following Thanksgiving and 2 weeks following Christmas and New Years, according to the district. Officials said the timeline could be extended, but they anticipate a return to hybrid learning on Jan. 22.
"As we continue to move forward, we need to move to remote learning for the safety of all members of our school community. We know that in-person learning is best for our students and our staff miss having our children with us," Bell said.
"At this time, when our state and our county is facing increasing numbers of positive cases we must put the physical health and safety of everyone first."
Last week, Cherry Hill School District announced it will move to an all-remote learning format at the end of the month amid a spike in new infections. Their shutdown is expected to last until Jan. 15.
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