The Accomack County School System took a survey of parents before adopting the plan for opening the schools this fall. At the K through 9 level 1237 returned the surveys. When asked how comfortable they felt letting their children return to school, 557 indicated they were not comfortable, 428 said they were comfortable but had some concerns and 252 said they were comfortable with no concerns. At the middle school level 374 responded that they were not comfortable, 358 said they were comfortable but with some concerns and 215 said they were comfortable with no concerns. At the high school level, 392 said they were not comfortable, 393 said they were comfortable with concerns and 260 said they were comfortable with no concerns.
The plan allows parents to choose whether their children return to the classroom two days a week or participate in the Virtual Virginia online learning management system. Those using the Virtual Virginia service will have to commit to an entire semester. While they may receive some classes from local teachers, the majority of the instruction will be handled by Virtual Virginia teachers.
Virtual Virginia will include Zoom and Google Meet uploads, digital components from the Accomack County School System core programs, and instructional packets will be provided to grades K-8 by request. High school students will have to have a reliable internet connection to take the classes.
The school system is planning to provide hot spots in the parking lots of all of the county public schools. It is also working with the Eastern Shore of Virginia Chamber of Commerce to provide a hot spot at the Chamber office in Melfa and to compile a list of other local businesses providing that service.
Students returning to school two days a week will have on line material to complete on their off days. That can be a combination of Virtual Virginia classes and material provided by their classroom teachers.