Sandy Hook Students to Return to School at Chalk Hill in Monroe [Updated w/ Clarification]

Monroe superintendent says arrangements have been made for Newtown to use closed school.


Updated, 1:22 p.m.

After prolonged debate over how to use Chalk Hill, Monroe has found a use for the former school building. On Sunday, Supt. of Schools James Agostine informed teachers and parents that Sandy Hook Elementary School will hold classes there, beginning this week.

Since the tragic shooting on Friday, Newtown school officials have been working with the Monroe Board of Education, Monroe Public Schools and surrounding towns to try to find a place to teach their students.

In his email sent to parents this morning, Agostine wrote, "We have been working with our First Selectman Steve Vavrek and representation from Newtown. Newtown will be using Chalk Hill School beginning this week. It is important that the Sandy Hook students get back to school quickly in an environment that is familiar and safe.

"We recognize that everyone would like to lend a helping hand, but we have been asked to hold back until the Newtown staff is settled in and they can direct our efforts."

Monroe Board of Education Chairman Darrell Trump was reached for comment Sunday, but declined to say anything until Monroe and Newtown's school districts flesh out more of the details and hold a joint press conference, which he said should be very soon.

Following Monroe's candlelight and prayer vigil Saturday night, First Selectman Steve Vavrek said talks were going on between the two towns, but that it was too early to say anything else.

On Sunday, Vavrek said, "The Board of Education of Newtown and their first selectman are requesting that any and all volunteer efforts wait until they know what will or will not be brought from the Sandy Hook School. We need to respect their wishes.

"If you have any ideas, please feel free to send them but please do not go to the school and ask to help as there is a very well orchestrated professional effort between federal, state and local custodians making true miracles happen."

Original Story

Students of Sandy Hook Elementary School, where 20 children and six adults were shot and killed on Friday, will possibly resume classes this week, but in an alternate location, according to the Danbury News-Times.

"We will not enter that building right now," Superintendent Janet Robinson told the News-Times.

Sandy Hook staff members will return to work on Monday to receive training from counselors on how to help their students deal with the tragedy once they return. Students and staff members at Hawley, Middle Gate and Head O'Meadow elementary schools, as well as Reed Intermediate and Newtown middle and high schools will return on Tuesday, Robinson told the News-Times.

Counseling is also available to both chlidren and adults on Sunday and Monday at Reed Intermediate School between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. and Newtown Youth & Family Services between 9 a.m and 4 p.m.

[Editor's Note: This article incorrectly stated that classes for Sandy Hill students would resume on Wednesdsay and has been updated.]



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