Virtual school year begins in Henry County

District is one of the first locally to start virtually

HENRY COUNTY, Va. – Whitney Calloway was hard at work in her classroom at Meadowview Elementary School even though students weren’t there.

“I like the virtual classroom just because there is flexibility in where you work,” Calloway said. “I’ve found that I have communicated with parents at a much higher level, which I’m super thankful for, than I have ever done before.”

Communication with students isn’t lacking either.

“The students themselves are taking the initiative to send me a message on [the school district’s online learning platform] and say, ‘Hey, I don’t quite get this. Can you help me?‘” Calloway said.

She wasn’t alone in her classroom though.

Her own children, all Henry County Public Schools students, were there with her.

To help with child care, the district allows teachers to bring their kids to work.

“Tomorrow, I have a meeting with my teacher,” said Calloway’s 8-year-old son, Mason. When asked if he was excited to get to interact with his teacher, he said “Yeah, really.”

Mason would much rather be in a classroom with his friends, but learning remotely from an iPad has its advantages.

Mason Calloway, 8, checks out some math equations on his iPad.
Mason Calloway, 8, checks out some math equations on his iPad. (WSLS)

“There’s a lot of videos that are there and sometimes some of the teachers talk a little too fast,” Mason said.

As a parent, Whitney said the new learning style has emphasized the importance of time management.

“Making sure that when we sit down to do school we focus, we get it done first,” she said.

Staying focused in a year that offers plenty of distractions.