CARROLL COUNTY, Va. – One Southwest Virginia school district is preparing to not have its students inside a classroom again until next year, at the earliest.
Carrol County Public School Superintendent Dr. Mark Burnette announced Friday that starting Dec. 9, the entire school district will be 100% virtual.
This decision follows a Thursday meeting of school superintendents across the Mount Rogers Health District with district director Dr. Karen Shelton.
That health district contains eight localities: Bland, Carroll, Grayson, Smyth, Washington and Wythe counties, as well as the cities of Bristol and Galax.
During that meeting, Shelton recommended that all school divisions within the district go virtual for the remainder of the fall semester.
On Friday morning, during an emergency school board meeting in Carroll County, the decision to go completely virtual beginning Dec. 9 was unanimously approved.
The earliest that students would return to the classroom is January 18, after two weeks of the spring semester.
Prior to students returning, the school board will reevaluate the COVID-19 data.
All athletics and extracurricular activities will be delayed until January 4, 2021, when this decision will be reevaluated as well.
The reason for not switching to virtual starting Monday is to provide parents time to arrange for childcare and teachers and staff to make plans for the continuation of instruction, according to Burnette.