Stepping Stones School Set to Reopen for In-Person Learning

August 31st, 2020

On Tuesday, September 8th, The Arc of Essex County’s Stepping Stones School will reopen for full time, in-person learning; 100 percent remote learning remains an option for students not yet ready to return in person.  Teachers and staff are excitedly preparing for the student’s return.  While the essence of the Stepping Stones education remains, The Arc is following all CDC and NJ DOH/DOE guidance while taking advance safety precautions amidst the ongoing pandemic.

Stepping Stones class sizes have always operated under a model of small staff-to-child ratios, and classes will continue to be capped at 12 students per classroom.  Work spaces are six feet apart and each student will be equipped with their own classroom supplies.  All staff will wear masks, including special masks with clear plastic to view the mouth.  Children will be encouraged to do so as tolerated.  Weekly exposure surveys will be completed by all staff and students along with daily health checks prior to admittance into the school.

Individualized therapies will continue in the therapy suites which will be cleaned and sanitized after each use.  Group therapies will take place in the students’ classrooms.  The school will be closed to outside visitors and the volunteer program will be placed on hold until further notice.  Teacher/parent meetings, tours, intakes, and IEP meetings will take place virtually.  School facilities will be sanitized regularly with a deep cleaning occurring three times per week.

While the 2020-2021 school year will look a bit different, our approach to learning remains unchanged.  We look forward to welcoming the majority of our students back for in-person learning and will continue to offer 100 percent virtual options for families who need it.

The Arc of Essex County's Stepping Stones School is a Department of Education approved private school for students with disabilities serving children ages 3-10.  Located in Roseland, NJ, the school is designed to meet the developmental and educational needs of children with cognitive impairments such as Down syndrome and other students with similar educational and developmental needs.  For more information, or to request a virtual tour and assistance with an out-of-district placement, contact Sue Brand, Director of Early Childhood and Education at (862) 210-8781 or sbrand@arcessex.org.