By Eugenia Jones
In a special called meeting on Monday, the McCreary County Board of Education voted not to offer a virtual learning option for the 2021-2022 school year for regular instruction. Acting on a motion by Stacey Hammons with a second by Johnny Barnett, the Board voted unanimously not to approve a draft proposal for the Raider Virtual Academy (grades 6-12) presented by McCreary County School Superintendent Corey Keith. The draft proposal presented by Keith gave an outline for providing educational services to a limited number of students who display the need for virtual learning instead of in-person learning and who have shown a history of successful virtual learning and good attendance. In addition to virtual instruction, the plan would have required students to complete in-person sessions as necessary and in-person assessments. An application process with an interview was one component for determining student eligibility to the program.
School board members expressed doubts about the quality of instruction students would receive via the virtual learning platform (Edmentum/Edgenuity) versus in-person instruction. Despite the proposal having specific criteria for eligibility to the Raider Virtual Academy, board members also expressed concerns about perception within the community if one student was admitted to the virtual learning platform and another was not accepted. Additionally, board members expressed concerns about the possibility of students being accepted to the Raider Virtual Academy while still being involved in extra-curricular activities or working full-time jobs.
In other business, the
McCreary County Board of Education:
• Accepted the final District Facilities Plan.
• Approved reconfiguration of Whitley City Elementary and Pine Knot Elementary Schools to include Preschool.
• Approved one distance learning teacher position at McCreary Central High School.