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Whitley County Schools stay virtual, Corbin starting in-person classes

Published: Oct. 5, 2020 at 4:45 PM EDT
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WHITLEY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - Some schools in Southern Kentucky are putting off heading back because of increased numbers of COVID-19 cases.

Students in three school systems in Whitley County are still learning virtually after plans called for them to head back last week. Two have plans to go back later this month.

Whitley County Schools have plans to stay with virtual learning after numbers have escalated in recent weeks placing them in what’s known as the red zone. That is after cases spiked to more than 30 in one day last week. The average number of cases were in the 20s late last week.

Whitley County students will stay learning at home, but Corbin still plans to go back on Thursday on a two day a week hybrid plan. Williamsburg City Schools start back on October 19.

“And so I think everyone is doing the best that they can. And ultimately it will up to parents to make the best decision for the student they have in their home," aid Marcy Rein with the Whitley County Health Department.

We spoke to four different groups of parents and two of them say they want their kids back in school while the other two say it is the right move to keep them at home.

Carrie Davis has a daughter who is a senior at Whitley County High School.

“I think we try to stay mindful of the health events, of the pandemic. What’s best for health needs, but it’s a shame she’s missing out on her Senior year," said Davis.

Davis would rather her daughter attend but based on escalating cases, all students in the county will be learning virtually.

“I’m really concerned about sending them back. I don’t want to send mine. Kids could bring it back home," said Angela Gedow, another Whitley County parent.

“I have a packet for him and it’s hard to do that for him. Help him. So, I hope he goes back to school and get school started," said Courtney Easton, a Whitley County parent.

Whitley County health leaders say several children have tested positive for the virus but in most cases, their symptoms appear to be minor.

“My overall impression from reports I get from staff is that their symptoms appear to be mild or they are not reporting symptoms," said Rein.

Some parents say the decision to keep kids at home is the right one. One mother said hers won’t be going back until the pandemic ends, but others like Davis disagree.

“I feel like we could probably take appropriate precautions and still have in-person schools. I don’t think we need to miss out on the entire school year to be safe," said Davis.

Health leaders admit it is a tough decision and from their standpoint, local school leaders are simply doing the best hey can.

Corbin’s superintendent says they are planning to return to school Thursday but are closing watching the ever-changing situation.

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