coronavirus in connecticut schools

Some Parents Push for Virtual Learning Option During COVID-19 Surge

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State leaders discussed the updated return-to-school COVID-19 protocols Tuesday,

They did so in a virtual meeting, which has some parents asking, “Why can’t our kids learn virtually too?”

With COVID cases soaring, Heather Duguay, a Middletown mother of two, has kept her kids home from school the past two days and she says the school has given her grief about truancy.

“I'm concerned for my kids' health, like, everybody I know right now has this virus,” Duguay said.

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Duguay and others have signed a petition to make virtual learning be an option for kids in Connecticut, as their concerns about COVID cases multiply.

In their virtual news conference, state leaders, including the education commissioner, stressed the importance of keeping kids in school and that they are focused on kids' safety in the classroom.

“We also know that schools provide critical supports, mental health supports, social, emotional supports, nutrition, physical activity, and these supports have grown even more important during this time and the challenges of the pandemic,” said Education Commissioner Charlene Russell-Tucker.

"We did pretty well when it came to a tele-learning the last time around. But we also learned the hard way that learning via Zoom is not nearly what it should be when it comes to keeping your kids in the classroom with their peers, with their friends, with a teacher that loves them in this day and age," said Gov. Ned Lamont.

“All those people on his press conference are virtual because it's not safe to gather. But he wants to sit here and tell me that my kids can be in a classroom that less than three feet away from other children who aren't vaccinated,” said Duguay.

The state says virtual learning also disrupts parents and guardians and their jobs.

Plus, not everyone has internet access.

Parents we spoke to say they understand that. That’s why they’re just asking for virtual learning to be an option.

The Middletown mother is hosting a drive-by rally in front of the governor’s mansion Friday at 5 p.m.

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