NORTHERN VIRGINIA (WDVM) — On Monday, Superintendent Scott Brabrand of Fairfax County Public Schools answered back-to-school questions during his virtual town hall. “I want you to know personally, as superintendent and as a parent of Fairfax County schoolchildren, that the decision you’re being asked to make is a difficult one,” he said.
Fairfax County parents have more time to decide whether their kids will be attending school in person or online this fall. FCPS extended the deadline from Friday, July 10 to Wednesday, July 15. Brabrand is also asking the school board to move the first day of school to after Labor Day.
“I hope you understand that our teachers and principals want to do their very best to make this as much of a normal school year as possible in an unprecedented situation,” said Brabrand.
The superintendent also encouraged parents to practice wearing face masks with their kids, who will be required to wear a face covering if they return to in person instruction.
“It’s just part of the civic responsibility for all of us now to lean in and do this to support our teachers in the classroom and keep it safe,” said Kathleen Clark, parent to three kids in the Arlington Public Schools system. APS is requiring its students and staff to wear a mask when school starts in August. All three of the Clark kids will be returning to school, in-person, twice a week.
“My oldest on the spectrum is high functioning but does not do well with technology. The longer he’s on it, it’s significantly harder to get him off,” Clark said. “A month in I was like, ‘He’s never going to make it this fall. I know we’re going to have to wear masks. He’s not going to make it.’ And then six weeks into it he could do 30 minutes and now he’s the most compliant person in the house.”
The Clarks have tons of masks in the house and Kathleen says since it’s become part of their daily routine, even her four-year-old is wearing one.