Marion County BOE responds to teachers request to have one learning method

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FAIRMONT, W.Va. – At the last Marion County Board of Education meeting, teachers across the county raised concerns and requested to switch to a single learning method for all students.

The idea was brought to the board because some teachers feel that they are working “double duty.” Over the summer, the Marion County BOE sent out surveys to all families and students in the county to collect data on which style of learning they wanted to do for the 2020-2021 school year. Virtual, distant, or in person.

All the decisions made prior to the year beginning were from a collaborative effort with the BOE, Marion County Health Department, and all school officials from all levels to come to conclusion on what they were going to do.

Some teachers feel they have more on their plate to juggle with the various teaching styles, where others may not be facing this sort of challenge.

“Some of the teaching positions, there is only one of that person at a school that’s qualified. So, there are scenarios that, what I believe they are calling “double duty,” happen,” said Super Intendent Randy Farley. “I’m not sure how it’s unavoidable. We have to follow whatever we work out without local health department, and what they’ll agree is safe now to do.”

Superintendent Farley said that this year, there had been very little resistance by community members and students following the rules regarding wearing masks whenever they are at school. He said he understands the concerns that these teachers have, but there will not be a simple solution, and they have to do what’s best and safest for the students.

“We asked the community what they wanted, and that’s how we all came up with this blended approach. We are planning to have a private meeting with people who have these concerns and I am eager to hear what they thing will be a resolution,” said Farley. “Something like this, won’t be solved overnight.”

Farley said they plan to set up a private meeting with principals and members of the teachers associations who raised these concerns, and they will try to accomplish something that will please everyone.

Farley said, people must understand, there are a lot of moving parts to this. They will do what’s best for the students’ education while keeping them as safe as possible.

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