Charlottesville City Schools taking actions after fights and other issues close high school Nov. 17
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Charlottesville City Schools says it is working to address several issues at Charlottesville High School that ultimately led to it being closed Friday, November 17.
CCS announced earlier in the day that the high school would be closed due to an “unusual number of staff absences” and a “limited number of substitutes.”
However, Superintendent Royal Gurley later acknowledged recent fights at CHS were a factor in Friday’s closing. He says the fights are between a small group of students who have received both supportive and strong disciplinary actions with no luck.
Dr. Gurley says the school system will be stepping up efforts to make sure CHS is physically and emotionally safe: There’ll be additional supports in place Monday and Tuesday, including have police officers doing patrols on campus. There will also be changes to how employees offer coverage at the front door and throughout the building.
“We’ve had a situation where someone has come into the building,” Gurley said. “Having a police presence outside the building deters that.”
The Charlottesville Education Association claims , “unsafe conditions, the lack of substitute teachers and coverage, and the lack of response from administration led staff to take action today.” The association also says its staff will wear black and orange in support of CHS on Monday and Tuesday.
“Our teachers come here, and they want to teach because they love teaching. They want to feel safe here and we have to ensure that those students who are causing those disruptions are addressed,” Gurley said.
This is a developing story.
11-17-2023 Release from Dr. Royal A. Gurley with Charlottesville City Schools:
Dear Charlottesville Schools Staff, Families, and Students–
As you know, CHS was closed today due to an unusual number of staff absences. In some cases, these staff absences were precipitated by two related fights yesterday as well as a number of other fights this school year among a small subset of students. These same students have often been tardy or absent from classes or otherwise disruptive. While these students have received both supportive and strong disciplinary actions, the situation remains. In addition, as many of you may know, last week CHS Principal Mr. Pitt announced his resignation. All of us – staff, students, families, and the Board – are feeling the cumulative impact.
11-17-2023 Release from the Charlottesville Education Association:
While the Charlottesville Education Association did not help plan any of today’s actions, CEA stands in support of the staff of Charlottesville High School.
The increase in unsafe conditions, the lack of substitute teachers and coverage, and the lack of response from administration led staff to take action today. CHS staff believes in their community and their students; they need our help.
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