Efforts continue to begin in-person learning for South Hadley High students | News


The timeline for the start of South Hadley High School classes remains shaky.

SOUTH HADLEY, MA (WGGB/WSHM) — The timeline for the start of South Hadley High School classes remains shaky. On Friday, we spoke one-on-one with Supt. Jahmal Mosley about the mold situation that’s delayed the start of school.

If you’re a student in grades 9-12 in South Hadley, the start to school has been a roller coaster so far. First, there was supposed to be remote learning, then the state said remote learning wouldn’t count towards the academic year.

Western Mass News obtained a copy of an email from the school to parents, explaining that mold abatement will begin Saturday, but it did not clarify when the start of school will begin.

“I had envisioned everyone back in school. The debate about going in-person, remote would be over,” Mosley said.

It’s safe to say the outside of South Hadley High School looks ready to welcome students back with the painted pavement and air conditioners humming, but Mosley said a mold problem inside is forcing the district to consider a ‘Plan B’ for educating students.

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“It’s going to be a longer process than even what we had anticipated,” Mosley noted.

Mosley said test results are coming back and “there’s two types of different molds.”

With state officials refusing to allow remote learning and no clear timeline for when students will be able to enter the building for the first day of class, Mosley added, “We are just going to push that back off until we can get a better sense of what’s going on.”

Mosley told Western Mass News the hurricane and damp weather has mold abatement companies working on overdrive throughout the region. Now, he’s forced to consider a new in-person location for South Hadley High’s 500-plus students.

“We’re looking for partnerships and collaboration with other school districts, private and parochial, as well as some of our local colleges,” Mosley said.

He said there’s transportation, COVID-19 safety, and agreement with the teacher’s union that would have to fall into place as well, plus Mosley said any alternate space would have to be large enough for all the grade levels and teachers.

“I would say the goal is to keep everyone together,” Mosley said.

We reached out to state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Spokesperson Jacqueline Reis told us “We continue to work with the district to get South Hadley High School students to class as soon as possible.”

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