SHENANDOAH VALLEY, Va. (WVIR) - A Waynesboro teacher is petitioning school leaders in Staunton, Waynesboro, and Augusta County to provide virtual-only learning until COVID-19 numbers are down.
Before restarting with a hybrid, all three school districts are currently scheduled for a one to two-week virtual start after the holidays to help reduce the spread.
Right now, schools in Waynesboro and Augusta County are set to resume in-person learning on January 11. Staunton begins in-person learning on January 19.
The petition on change.org has nearly 300 mostly-local signatures according to Kathryn Brown, a second-grade teacher at William Perry Elementary School. She says she wants school officials to use data from the Virginia Department of Health and CDC guidelines to determine when it’s safe for students to return to the classroom.
“We have managed to avoid large outbreaks with mitigation strategies,” Brown stated. “But, my concern is that we are part of the community, schools are part of the community, and the rate of community spread is high, and we can help reduce that number by using a virtual model.”
The superintendents from all three school divisions talk with the area’s health district director on a weekly basis.