Johnston High School to close early Monday due to staff shortages


Johnston High School will dismiss students at 11 a.m. Monday, Jan. 3, due to staffing shortages.

Johnston Schools Superintendent Dr. Bernard DiLullo Jr. said “23 educators” called off this morning, leading to a short school day for the district’s oldest students.

As in every other corner of the state and nation, parents, students and staff are dealing with spikes in positive COVID-19 diagnoses and a shortage of tests.

On Monday morning, the Rhode Island Department of Health provided Johnston Schools with 200 rapid tests.

“RIDOH provided 200 test kits, but 200 is a very minimal number,” DiLullo said Monday. “Testing availability has been an issue.”

All of Johnston’s schools have seen an increase in cases. The town of Johnston ranks third in the state for positive cases of the virus (per 100,000), according to the DOH.

“COVID numbers have gone up over the past week,” DiLullo said. “But as I’ve said before, it’s important for kids to be in the classroom.”

DiLullo said, “it’s a challenge” to keep schools open under current conditions, however open schools and operational classrooms are the best option for the district’s student body.

Only the Johnston High School will be affected by Monday’s early dismissal. So far, the rest of Johnston’s schools will be operating on a normal schedule.


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