Thousands of Fairfax County, Virginia, public school students will be returning to classrooms next month but many of their teachers will remain at home and teach classrooms full of kids virtually.
On Tuesday the school board voted unanimously to approve the latest draft plan for a return to in-school learning. It calls for all students to attend in-person classes twice per week by mid-March.
As of Feb. 2, 1,656 Fairfax County Public Schools teachers had approved American with Disabilities Act accommodations; 644 other school staffers qualified for the accommodations too.
To qualify, teachers must have an underlying health condition or be at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus.
To help students in the classroom while their teachers are virtual, the school system said it plans to hire over 845 classroom monitors. As of earlier this week, 74% of the positions have been filled.
The school system said that teachers could withdraw their ADA requests if they feel comfortable returning to the classroom after they have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19.
The school system said 90% of staffers have requested or scheduled their first dose of the vaccine, and it is working to ensure staffers get their second doses in the next few weeks
Thursday night, the school board heard from a number of students and parents who urged the school board to move students to in-person learning five days a week.