The remaining older grades will return to in-person classes in Virginia Beach Tuesday, bringing all students back face-to-face for the first time since mid-November.
The students, seventh through 12th graders, will return under the same hybrid approach previously used — in person half the time and virtual the other half. Pre-K through sixth graders, as well as special education students, already returned for in-person classes on Feb. 2. Students who have opted to remain virtual would continue to learn remotely.
The return of these students comes after the School Board voted in January to tweak the division’s reopening plan, moving away from tying the entire system to the region’s health metrics and instead allowing the administration to close individual classrooms or schools based on the spread of cases.
All students would still have been learning virtually under the division’s original plan.
Throughout Hampton Roads, coronavirus transmission rates have been steadily declining over recent weeks, though they remain elevated since earlier in the fall.
Now, the eastern region is reporting roughly 514 new coronavirus cases a day, down from a high of 1,529 on Jan. 20. And 12.1% of the region’s coronavirus tests are coming positive, down from 21.6% on Jan. 6.
With thousands of students back in brick-and-mortar buildings, the division will continue requiring students and teachers to wear masks in addition to other safety strategies. COVID safety teams will continue to perform unannounced checks at different buildings to make sure proper procedures are being followed.
Peter Coutu, 757-222-5124, firstname.lastname@example.org