Lynchburg city schools presents ‘Return to Learning’ draft plan to board members

Students go back to school in person or virtually on Aug. 24

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Lynchburg City School parent Andrew Glover listened to what draft plan school leaders have come up with on Tuesday night from a distance.

“It’s not a final plan, it’s a draft plan after five months. We need this to pick it up. We need to become proactive instead of reactive,” Glover said.

Glover has two children in elementary school who will be the first group of kids to go back on Aug. 24 and learn in person.

And on that day, learning will look different for LCS students.

“By hybrid, it is part face to face instruction and then it is part virtual instruction, which is very different than what we did in the spring,” said Dr. Crystal Edwards, superintendent.

School leaders say children in Pre-K through fifth grades will get in-person instruction two days a week and learn online the other days.

Then those in the sixth grade up until high school will be learning virtually until they’re allowed face to face learning at a later date.

This is an idea Glover says he can’t stand behind.

“That’s not going to work. Kids are not going to be able to get the minimum education training they need to meet the minimum standards at two days a week,” Glover said.

School board members have their concerns too.

“How is that going to possibly work Pre-K through third? That’s a big red flag,” Susan Morrison, board member representing District 1, said.

“We know that asking a pre-school, second-grader to stay on a device all day long is not good instructional practice. So that’s part of where I challenge the family and community connect team,” Edwards said.

The superintendent and board members recognize this won’t be easy for parents and say the draft plan will continue to change.

But one thing is clear it's going to take a community effort to make this work.

“I would love to see city council reiterate that to employers’ things are going to be hard this fall and we all have to work together to get there,” Belle Evans, LCS board member for District 1, said.

If you want to read the “Return to Learn Plan” or watch the meeting, click here.

On Wednesday afternoon school officials will be holding a press conference answering parents’ questions live. LCS asks people who have questions to submit questions through their YouTube page and send them at 2:30 p.m.