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Jamestown superintendent updates school efforts and coronavirus

Posted at 10:26 AM, Mar 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-21 10:26:15-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — While schools are closed for the time being, Jamestown Superintendent Dr. Bret Apthorpe, is making sure students and parents are updated.

In a Facebook live update, the superintendent spoke candidly about the impact of the coronavirus on his school district and what the future looks like.


Apthorpe says New York State tests, for grades 3-8, have been cancelled for the year. He explaind Advanced Placement exams will be offered over the computer. "They will be free response," he said.

According to Apthorpe, the AP will be sending more information to parents on April 3.

Many students and parents have been wondering about New York State Regents exams. Those are typically administered at the end of the school year. Right now, the superintendent says there has been no guidance from the New York State Department of Education.

"Right now, they're dealing with the moment," Apthorpe said.

The AP tests, Apthorpe says, will be designed to test the knowledge and skills, "acquired by this point in time in the calendar year." He says it's unclear if the Regents Exams will do the same.

For high school seniors, the concern has shifted to the rest of the year. The superintendent says, "there will be graduation." He also said there will be a yearbook and there will be a prom. "We just don't know what it will look like," Apthorpe said.


Over the last week, food service has been vitally important for families. "We have food and encourage you to take advantage of it," Apthorpe said.

In the last week, the superintendent said the district served 3,000 meals.

Students and parents, in the district, are encouraged to pick up breakfast and lunch for the next day. They're bundled together. The superintendent said, you drive up, say what school the student goes to and drive away with as many lunches as needed.

Apthorpe encouraged students to keep a social distance when getting together.

Is school out for the year?

The superintendent says he doesn't know. "I won't reopen school unless it's safe to do so," Apthorpe said.

Earlier this week, Governor Cuomo said, the peak of the coronavirus in New York is expected around May 1.

Apthorpe says he will be following the guidance of New York State leaders and the Chautauqua County Department of Health.