See below for video from this morning, as “Northern Virginia education associations [from Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William and Arlington] join together for return to virtual learning press conference.” As the first speaker says:
“…we know how critically important it is to protect our community and our students and staff from COVID-19. The most recent guidelines given by the governor to protect the Commonwealth specifically excluded schools. We must stand united to push back against this rapid increase in the virus. Gov. Northam must provide leadership to our schools, in addition to the guidance he has given to our businesses and public spaces…We ask that the governor return the state to a phase prior to Phase 3; whether that’s Phase 2 or Phase 1 at this point remains to be seen as cases continue to surge. The safest option is to remain virtual for our schools until cases return to a downward trend…Everything we are talking about today is supported by data…Everyone wants to be back in schools and everyone wants us to be back to normal, but opening when it’s safe to do so…”
Also, as the education associations’ letter states:
“Education Associations in the Northern Virginia Region, representing more than 12,000 school employees, are urging you to return the entire Commonwealth back to Phase II of the reopening strategy, including a recommendation that public schools return to virtual learning as the safest option until case rates return to a downward trend and remain below 5% PCR as indicated by the CDC.”
Seems sensible and responsible…although clearly, as you can hear in the video, there are people who want to reopen schools immediately, even as COVID-19 surges.