Students at New Paltz High School last week briefly returned to remote learning, not due to recent local upticks in Covid-19 infections, but because of a faulty water heater.
During a meeting of the Board of Education held on Wednesday, May 18, Superintendent Angela Urbina-Medina said the “hot water tank at the high school suffered a catastrophic failure and needed to be replaced.”
In a message posted to the district website on Monday, May 16, Urbina-Medina said remote learning was the only option available save for canceling class altogether for the following two days.
“There is currently no hot water, which is a requirement from the New York State Education Department for students to be in attendance for instruction,” read Urbina-Medina’s letter. “Instead of in-person learning, we will shift high school students to remote schedules for Tuesday, May 17 and Wednesday, May 18.”
The school was closed on that Monday.
Because the district already had remote learning protocols in place, school officials said the transition was seamless, with students following schedules virtually signing in to each classes’ Google Meet link on their Chromebooks during regular class time. Ulster BOCES Career & Technical Center students also connected to their classes remotely.
The hot water heater issue only impacted the school day, with a school concert, art show, sporting events and the annual budget and Board of Education vote still taking place. AP exams impacted by the closure were planned to be rescheduled.