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Education Work Group to help guide process for reopening Virginia schools

19 May 2020 Covid19 Luray/Page County Shenandoah County Front Royal/Warren County Winchester Frederick County Clarke County News


In Gov. Northam‘s Monday briefing, he announced the new COVID-19 Education Work Group to help chart a path forward for determining when and how schools can safely reopen later this year.

The group is comprised of representatives from Virginia’s public and private early childhood, K-12, and higher education systems and includes teachers, superintendents, parents, college presidents, state agency personnel, special education advocates, museum directors and student perspectives as well.

Virginia’s COVID-19 Education Work Group will develop recommendations on key issues schools must address before reopening and help determine how to ensure continuity of learning for Virginia students. After guidance is developed, the work group will transition to focus on long-term recovery plans to include addressing learning gaps and social and emotional needs of students resulting from school closures.

In the coming weeks, Gov. Northam will outline a roadmap for Virginia schools, colleges and universities to return to in-person learning in a safe, equitable and responsible manner. The data-driven and science-based approach will include recommendations from the COVID-19 Education Work Group, and will be coordinated with the Forward Virginia plan to gradually ease public health restrictions. 

Gov. Northam also announced on Monday that beaches in Virginia Beach will reopen to the public starting this Friday, May 22. Northam noted group sports, speakers, alcohol, tents, groupings of umbrellas and fishing on sand beaches in the resort area is prohibited. Parking garages and surface lots will also operate at a 50 percent capacity. Northam emphasized that beachgoers must still practice social distancing or the beaches will be closed again.

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