The head of the Knox County Education Association (KCEA) is calling on that district to begin school this semester in a hybrid or virtual model as COVID-19 cases spike in Knox County and across the state.
WBIR has more:
The Knox County Education Association called for the county’s schools to start the semester in the “red zone” with no in-person learning, or with an alternating hybrid schedule where students alternate in-person days, the group’s president said Monday.
“We can’t sacrifice lives over politics and we need to do what’s right and what’s best for everyone,” Tanya Coats told 10News. “Educating kids is a priority for us, but we just need to do it remotely from home.”
The push in Knox County to move to remote learning comes at time when new cases of COVID-19 in Tennessee and in Knox County are increasing.
As WBIR notes, since December 11th:
. . . the county’s health department has reported in excess of 10 thousand more positive tests and more than 100 new deaths tied to the virus. The number of active cases has increased by 62 percent.
In fact, Tennessee achieved “best in the world” status for COVID transmission rate (the highest rate) in December and the entire state is currently identified as a COVID-19 “hot spot” according to Tennessean reporter Bret Kelman:
Some districts have already announced they will open virtually this semester for at least a few days up to a few weeks. With numbers surging and a post-Holiday spike expected, it’s not clear when conditions will be safe for in-person learning.
Meanwhile, Gov. Bill Lee has called a “not so special” session of the legislature to address the issue. That meeting will begin on January 19th.
For more on education politics and policy in Tennessee, follow @TNEdReport