Governor Ralph Northam said in a press conference Friday that all school divisions in Virginia should provide some degree of in person education by March 15. Accomack and Northampton County Public Schools have had, with some brief interruptions, hybrid learning in place for the entire school year. Both counties offer in classroom instruction two days per week with online instruction two more days. As of now, it isn’t known if the in person component will be increased on the Shore.
Northam’s comments mainly concerned the availability of COVID vaccine and his hope that school systems will remain open during the traditional summer break to help students prepare for the 21-22 academic year.
Northam says every school division in Virginia should make at least some in-person schooling available by March 15, citing CDC guidance and research that shows coronavirus spread is rare in schools when proper safety measures are in place. Teachers are in the process of getting vaccinated and Northam emphasized how teachers have been prioritized for vaccines. Summer schooling will not be mandatory, but schools should prioritize it as an option. Northam says federal dollars are available to help.