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Richmond superintendent remains doubtful about in-person learning: 'I do have concerns'

Posted at 5:40 PM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 18:10:06-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Families with children attending Richmond Public Schools will receive surveys this week in which they can share feedback on whether schools should remain virtual or switch to in-person learning during the second semester. Richmond Public School staff members will also get the survey.

Richmond Superintendent Jason Kamras said along with that feedback, the Richmond School Board will look at health data related to COVID-19, in particular, the percent-positivity of virus not just city-wide, but by sub-group such as race.

"We know that the African-American and Latino communities have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and that represents about 90-percent of RPS families," Kamras said.

He added they will also consider if school facilities are up to standard in the era of COVID-19.

"We’re looking at bathroom readiness, looking at air quality readiness," he said.

For his part, Kamras says he is still not optimistic about in-person learning next semester.

"I do have concerns. We see rising infection rates all across the country, here in Central Virginia," he said.

Earlier this week, Richmond Schools announced there would be no winter sports.

Kamras said a final decision about second-semester learning would be made at the December 7 school board meeting.

"The second semester begins on February 8 and our commitment to our families and our staff was to make the decision before winter break so that everybody would have ample time to plan and prepare," he said.