Surry schools to offer hybrid learning while awaiting mask town hall

Published 9:28 pm Sunday, January 23, 2022

Surry County Public Schools has announced this week will be a hybrid instruction week while the district awaits a Thursday town hall meeting on masks.

Superintendent Dr. Serbrenia Sims posted on Facebook Sunday that parents can choose to send their children to school or allow them access to instruction virtually at home.

“Please do not put your child on a bus or bring them to school without a mask since our mask policy is still in effect until it is revised by our School Board,” the post stated.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s executive order repealing Virginia’s universal K-12 mask mandate was issued on Jan. 15, his first day in office. It mandates that parents be allowed to opt their children out of any school-imposed mask mandate, without needing to provide a reason.

Surry County Public Schools’ School Board will hold a town hall meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at Luther Porter Jackson Middle School. The meeting will require masks and temperature checks for in-person attendees. People can also join on Facebook Live, and will be able to speak there as well. The town hall will be followed by a board meeting at 7 p.m.

“It is our understanding that, even with the executive order, Virginia Commonwealth law allows school divisions the flexibility to continue requiring masks on buses and in our schools if their elected school boards choose to do so,” reads a letter attached to the Facebook post. “As a school division, our top priorities are to protect the health and safety of everyone in our buildings and maintain in-person learning for our students. By continuing to require masks, we can help reduce the spread of the virus and avoid high numbers of exposures, quaratines, and positive cases that can disrupt the learning process.”