LYNCHBURG, Va. – Some Lynchburg educators are calling for a return to school that is 100% virtual.
Other than a few exceptions for students with special needs or IEP teams who determine that in-person instruction is necessary, the Lynchburg Education Association is asking for the fall semester to be held exclusively online.
As it stands right now, Lynchburg City Schools will reopen for the fall with a combination of in-building, hybrid and remote learning.
The LEA addressed concerns for the health and safety of students and their families, as well as teachers and their kids and families they take care.
The group said the conditions in some Lynchburg city schools create a scenario, which according to the Virginia Department of Health, allow the virus to easily spread. That includes indoor areas with poor ventilation where people gather for more than 15 minutes.
The LEA pointed to a survey they gave to their members in which 74% of members said they do not feel comfortable returning to the classroom, bus and cafeteria. 55% apparently said they are “adamantly” opposed to reopening.
There are financial implications of in-person instruction too, according to the LEA. The group said that schools will have to invest in extra signage, plexiglass, cleaning supplies, PPE and “other items that will be obsolete once a vaccine is developed.”
Safety remains a top concern for the group.
“As one staff member stated: A will should not be a school supply,” the group wrote in a statement.
The LEA asks for the school board to make the change to 100% virtual learning prior to staff reporting for work on Aug. 4.