CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice has announced schools in West Virginia will remain closed for the rest of the current school year.
Justice says while he had hoped for the possibility of opening schools and giving students the opportunity to see their friends and teachers again, he feels this decision to continue distance learning is the best course of action to keep students and staff safe amid the pandemic.
“I’ve thought really hard and tried really in every way, and very hopefully, to be able to go back to school because I know how much the kids would appreciate it,” Justice says. “If we’re not going to be able to have our state workers and everyone back, how can I put you in a building all crowded together?”
West Virginia State Superintendent Clayton Burch says the decision was not taken lightly, and the school system will continue to support students through distance learning and providing meals through the end of the school year. Burch also says virtual school in the summer will be free, and a free SAT will be rescheduled in the fall.
“The sheer number of caring adults who have stepped forward to make sure every decision made has been in the best interest of our children has been absolutely impressive, so on behalf of the West Virginia Department of Education, thank you very much, ” Burch says.
Birch and Justice also urged all schools to do what they can to celebrate the Class of 2020 and create a seamless transition into higher education.
“To all the children, please continue to try to keep up with your studies. Run through the finish line and accomplish all you can accomplish this year,” Justice says. “This will pass.”