What’s next for education in Virginia?

Published 7:16 pm Tuesday, June 16, 2020

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Gov. Ralph Northam’s recent announcement of reopening Virginia K-12 public schools in phases is encouraging, to be sure. After the past few months of uncertainty and anxiety regarding the future of education in this COVID-19 world, it’s encouraging to learn that state leaders in education and health have been plenty occupied with how teaching and learning will resume. No doubt school divisions throughout the country — the world, even — have been grappling with the same concern.

As stated in the press release last Tuesday, there are many varied individuals included in some task forces to create and then implement the step. We trust that educators and administrators in Western Tidewater have, or soon will be able to offer suggestions and insights, particularly as they might apply to our region.

You’ll note Sabyn Hartman’s letter above on the topic. The Zuni resident is understandably concerned how effective the steps of hand-washing, wearing masks and maintaining social distance could be among students, especially if they are either too young to fully understand or willfully resistant. Her suggestion is that keeping school buildings closed for another year is preferable to the distinct possibility of a resurgence of the virus. That is something for school leaders to consider here and in Richmond.

Meanwhile, you can see details of each phase at www.governor.virginia.gov.