Dare Ed Board votes return to virtual learning

By on November 13, 2020

Three weeks after opening school buildings  — and with between 25 and 30 percent of district teachers already sidelined due to either being quarantined or testing positive with COVID-19 —the Dare County Board of Education voted 6-1 on Nov. 13 to return immediately to remote learning for PreK-12 students through the end of the first semester, which goes through Jan. 18.

Citing staff storages, the board voted to continue serving the 88 special needs extended content students face-to-face in all grade levels and to continue athletic programs and other extra-curricular activities. All students in grades 6 through 12, both in-person and virtual, would return to their original remote learning teachers. The K-5 virtual students would continue with their current virtual teacher, with K-5 traditional students continuing with their current teacher.

Teacher workdays will be next Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 16 and 17. Chromebook distribution will be held on Nov. 18, and remote learning will resume on Nov. 19.

“If you can’t have a teacher in front of the class, you can’t have the class,” said Dare County Board of Education Chair Bea Basnight. “We are at the breaking point where our teachers are out or sick. I think we are at the point now where we don’t have enough staff to staff the buildings.”

For her part, Vice Chair Mary Ellon Ballance echoed those sentiments, “I think we are at a complete breaking point right now,” she said, referring to the teacher shortage. “If we don’t do something, we are going to have a lot of bigger problems on our hands.”

Board member Harvey Hess cast the lone dissenting vote.



Comments

  • Harvey Hess III

    Proud of my Dad. He isn’t trying to get relected. His term ends soon. I actually grew up here. My dad wants to see special needs and elementary age kids in school. Thank you to Harvey Hess Jr. Thanks Dad for trying and working hard. This is written by Harvey Hess III. He would teach kids for free. He actually just cares about education.

    Friday, Nov 13 @ 7:04 pm
  • 60s Suzanne

    We vote Bea Basnight off the Board because she’s a Democrat but it’s okay to have a guy who apparently doesn’t think much of science and does not seem to believe the virus is that big a deal?

    Friday, Nov 13 @ 8:00 pm
  • Just a mom

    I love you Harvey👍😁

    Friday, Nov 13 @ 8:29 pm
  • Hunkered Down

    It’s been reported that School Board member Harvey Hess was quite vocal. He made a snide comment about the teachers under great stress due to the massive shortages in staffing. Stating if they find their jobs too difficult, they should go find other employment. Hess was also quoted as saying “I think our kids are safer in school then they are going to Home Depot or Food Lion.” He thinks too many people are being quarantined after exposure to others testing positive. Really? Who voted for this clown?

    This is exactly why the Covid-19 numbers are exploding here on the beach. Time to take your head out of the sand (and your @@@@. I’m still waiting for this all to “magically disappear” like the Orange man in DC said back in March. Wake up folks… We all in for a very DARK winter unless we ALL change our habits.

    Friday, Nov 13 @ 10:01 pm
  • Bigger Picture

    Harvey may know hotdogs and history. What he doesn’t seem to fathom is that this virus doesn’t discriminate. It will latch on to anyone and replicate. It doesn’t care who or how. Harvey says he’d be glad to volunteer his time to be a substitute teacher during these challenging times. Wow! It must be nice to be financially secure enough to ‘volunteer’ to work for free. Consider how many of these substitutes actually ~need~ this income right now. Why else would they jeopardize their health to enter one of these schools? Mr. Hess is all bluster.

    Harvey also refuses to recognize another vulnerable portion of the school population. Hint: They’re likely a bit older than the students and they’re called ‘teachers’. Are their lives not as important than yours or mine? Let’s hope that we can slow down the spread Covid-19 until an effective treatment and/or a working vaccine is available. We can help by closing our schools for the time being. It seems the school system is well-versed in remote learning.

    This virus is tenacious and unpredictable. Be smart. Wear a mask. This will pass but when… is up to us.

    Saturday, Nov 14 @ 12:16 am
  • sandflea

    It seems to me that Harvey didn’t take many science classes or do very well in them. I’m assuming the same for math classes. Its a virus folks. V I R U S….. VIRUS.

    Saturday, Nov 14 @ 10:21 am
  • anotherobxman

    Harvey Hess should volunteer on a Covid ICU ward and learn a bit about science and contagious diseases. I would feel sorry for any parent that had to send a child to a class taught by this guy. This guy was a teacher? What subject did he teach, recess?

    Saturday, Nov 14 @ 8:25 pm
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