UPDATE–Gov. Inslee Shuts Schools for Rest of Academic Year [VIDEO]
As of 2:30PM Monday, April 6th, Gov. Jay Inslee and Superintendent Chris Rykdal (pictured) announced that all WA State public schools, K-12, will be 'closed' through the end of the 2020 spring academic season.
So, all students will learn from home, via digital sources, and will not return to the classroom through June, or the end of the year.
Inslee did say the state has come over the top of the curve, and does not want to 'lose the gains' made from battling the COVID-19 virus. He seemed to indicate officials think we're on, or have passed perhaps, the high water mark.
He did say seniors in good standing will receive their diplomas this year. He said "we know distance learning will never replace" the 'regular' learning experience. He also addressed the 'grab and go' lunch programs and other such treatments, but did not really address the social toll or acknowledge the disappointment of cancelled activities, sports or other events. He and Superintendent Rykdal both referenced the social food service and other such activities of the districts, but both glossed over the activity/social/events lost and their impact on students of all grade levels.
Rykdal said digital-online learning will "never" replace traditional in class experiences but believes the state needs to be ready to do so if needed in future.
Inslee said special dispensations for 'equity' in education for students learning English as a 2nd language, that there may be some limited in-building activities.
Inslee did not address senior graduations or any other normal celebratory events that mark one's senior year. He did say perhaps there is an option to bring students back for a few days for graduations, but little else was said.
To watch the video for yourself of the press conference, click on the button below.