‘We’re not pleased’: Roanoke Education Association responds to RCPS plan

Plan unveiled Tuesday

ROANOKE, Va. – Roanoke Education Association President Bettye Bell made her position clear on Wednesday about Roanoke City Schools’ plan for the upcoming school year.

“We’re not pleased with it. I would like for the parents and the board to consider more of a virtual opening,” said Bell.

As 10 News has reported, the plan presented Tuesday calls for in-person classes four days a week as long as at least 30% of students agree to learn remotely.

As a high school teacher, Bell’s especially concerned because there are so many young people testing positive for COVID-19 right now.

“I don’t feel comfortable returning. I’m in that high risk age group,” Bell said.

She is, however, comfortable with the process for developing the plan.

“I think the school board has worked well with the community. I think this is great,” Bell said. “I think the public is pleased with it, I just think we need to do more tweaking.”

Roanoke City Schools Superintendent Verletta White said Wednesday teachers will have the option of teaching in the Virtual Academy instead of in person, but they won’t be able remotely teach kids who are taking classes in person.

“Our number one is to take care of everyone we serve, to make sure that we are taking care of our staff members, our teachers who means so much to us, as well as our students,” said White.

White said, overall, feedback on the plan had been positive as of Wednesday afternoon but nothing was official.

“The plan may need to be tweaked, and that’s the reason it’s so important for us to hear from our staff members and from our students and parents,” White said.

As of Wednesday, a date to vote on a plan had not been set.