Lee Co. High School principal responds to COVID-19 rise, virtual learning

LCHS principal responds to COVID-19 rise and virtual learning

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - Lee County High School students are preparing for another day of virtual learning.

As of Wednesday, there were a total of six COVID-19 cases that came out of Lee County High School, according to their weekly report that runs from Dec. 4 through Dec. 11.

Within that same reporting period, 93 have been quarantined due to exposure, which includes staff and students.

The school system is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases, particularly at the high school.

After talking with public health officials and out of caution for safety, school administrators made the decision to make the rest of the school week virtual for all high school students.

It kicked off to a good start Wednesday, according to Principal Dr. Karen Hancock.

Dr. Karen Hancock
Dr. Karen Hancock (Source: WALB)

“We’ve probably had some of our best attendance in many of our classrooms,” said Hancock.

School officials said they took a lot of time over the summer to prep for situations like this in the event they ever occurred.

A switch like this has very little to no impact on learning, according to Principal Hancock.

They’ve received a mixed response from students on the switch.

Hancock said some students were a little stressed to start with but lots of communication between teachers and students helped relieve that, and teachers are reporting back to school leaders.

“So, we’ve gathered together several times today just to say how’s it going, what do you need, how can we help, and so far the teachers have said no it’s going great. The kids are all showing up in the Google Classroom. We’re meeting virtually. They have a couple of students that do not have internet or they do not have computers and they’re touching base with those students,” explained Hancock.

Before Wednesday, two-thirds of the students were learning traditionally in the classroom. Now, all 1,400 are in the virtual classroom, at least until Friday.

“We’ll continue to monitor those numbers and then the district will help us make a decision for what we’re gonna do next week, but at this time, no decisions have been made. We’ve been focused just on this shift,” said Hancock.

Principal Hancock believes the spike is attributed to the recent Thanksgiving holiday break.

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