Versailles, Mo. school district switches to all-virtual learning as coronavirus cases surge

Published: Oct. 21, 2020 at 4:01 PM CDT
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VERSAILLES, Mo. (KY3) - Classrooms in the Morgan County R-II School District will remain empty for the next two weeks as the students switch to virtual learning.

It’s a decision the school district didn’t want to make, but said it was necessary because of how prevalent the coronavirus is among it’s student body and staff.

“We’ve been trying our best to keep our kids here and not have the virus spread for us, but for whatever reason it is, and we have too much of it in our buildings," said Superintendent Steven Barnes.

According to the school district’s website, there are 23 students and eight staff out sick with COVID-19.

There are combined 290 students staff quarantining because of close contact.

“We were well over half of our population that was at home already," Barnes added.

On Wednesday, parents were able to pick up their child’s Chromebooks, internet hotspots, and other supplies they will need for class over the next few weeks.

“It’s probably one of the smartest moves they made," said Rhonda Skoglie, a parent of students in the district.

”I’d rather do virtual than have them in and out of school constantly and getting sick," added Jacqueline Marriott.

Parents know it may be hard to balance work, parenting, and schooling from home.

”My dad is going to be helping me out, so it’s a little easier for me to do it, but I imagine everybody else is going to have a hard time with it," said Crystal Sheets, a parent of three students.

Meals will be provided to students like they were in the spring and summer, with the district running food on bus routes to deliver to families.

Barnes said he knows it’s tough, but is encouraging the community to follow the CDC’s guidelines to make sure students are able to get back in the classroom.

“No matter what you believe about it, it impacts us at the end of the day," Barnes said. "It’s really important that we focus on that impact and avoid being out and doing everything that we can to stay in [the classroom], because we know that’s best for kids.”

The school district says as long as things improve, students should be back in their seats on November 5th. All regular season sports have been put on hold.

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