Students to Return to Indian Hills, Oakland Public Schools

Wyckoff and Franklin Lakes school superintendents have officially said students won't return to classrooms on Monday

Indian Hills high schoolers and Oakland Public School students will be the first local children to return to classes more than a week after Hurricane Sandy cut power to millions across the state. 

Electricity was restored to the Oakland high school Saturday afternoon, according to Ramapo-Indian Hills School District Superintendent Lauren Schoen. As of Sunday afternoon, however, power had not been restored to Ramapo High School due to significant utility damage.

Students from Wyckoff, Franklin Lakes and Oakland attend Ramapo and Indian Hills high schools.

RIH school officials decided to have students return to Indian Hills for a full day session on Monday, Nov. 5.

Ramapo High School remains without power and Ramapo students will not return to classes until power is restored, Schoen said.

"District, Indian Hills and Ramapo administrators will be meeting on Monday to formulate a plan for our Ramapo students," Schoen wrote in a release Sunday. "We will be in contact with parents and faculty on Monday with an update on Ramapo High School."

She also said that bus transportation may be disrupted, but "we are confirmed with our bus company that all the routes will run."

Oakland's elementary and middle schools were scheduled to reopen on a regular schedule on Monday, as well, according to the Oakland Public School District website

And the district reminded parents Sunday that "school bus transportation cannot be provided in areas were street closures exist."

Students elsewhere in the FLOW-area faced a more uncertain week.

In Franklin Lakes, Superintendent Frank Romano told parents and guardians that while they had hoped to re-open schools Monday, none of the borough's classrooms are back at full power.

"Returning students to school is a top priority but never over safety," Romano wrote in a release Sunday. 

Safety issues on borough streets, along with staffing challenges and lingering questions about busing had compelled Romano to close all schools on Monday. 

"The restoration of power to residents and schools has been slow but steady, yet our town officials have played a crucial role in that progress and continue to communicate with Orange & Rockland Electric."

Wyckoff's superintendent canceled classes Monday and Tuesday, as none of the five public schools in the township have power.

"Restoring power to residents has been slow, but steady in the Township, Superintendent Rich Kuder said in a statement Sunday. "Wyckoff officials are in constant contact with both PSE&G and Orange & Rockland utilities and we anxiously await the re-establishment of power at each of our schools... Returning students to school as soon as possible, is important to you, the administration and the board of education."

The superintendent added that parents could expect another message from Honeywell on Monday afternoon with an update.

"While I know it is difficult, I would ask that all parents be patient and understanding as we address this unprecedented crisis brought upon us by Hurricane Sandy," Kuder wrote. 

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Joseph M. Gerace at Joseph.Gerace@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox every morning, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Eric November 05, 2012 at 01:52 AM
Schools last. Homes and offices first
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