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Churchland High School shifts to virtual learning because of COVID-19 cases

Portsmouth Public Schools said the shift to remote learning was because a number of staff members tested positive for COVID-19.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — Portsmouth Public Schools said Churchland High School would move to virtual learning temporarily, after several of the school's staff members tested positive for COVID-19.

A spokeswoman for the school division said Wednesday that seven employees at Churchland High School reported positive test results within a 24-hour period.

Because of that, students were to switch to remote learning on Thursday (May 12) and Friday (May 13). Additionally, Churchland High School canceled all after-school and extracurricular activities through the weekend.

"How I felt, I was really nervous because I like seeing all my friends every day, coming to school even though it's hard to get up in the morning. I still like seeing them. I enjoy their time. And I love all my teachers," said freshman Devyn Thomas. 

In a letter to families, school leaders said students and parents should expect live virtual instruction Thursday and Friday.

Resident Stephen Faherty has a family member who attends Churchland High.

"I feel bad for the faculty that have COVID, but I think they made the right decision in protecting the students. I feel for the students too because I know in person is better. But perhaps it will work for some of them," said Faherty. 

Administrators expect to be back to normal operations on Monday, May 16, although an email sent to members of the school community noted that the virtual learning period could be extended if necessary.

"I hope everything is cleared by Monday. I kind of wished we didn't have the mask mandate lifted, for the fact it could have avoided people getting sick. But I hope they feel better," Devyn added. 

Read the full email from Churchland administrators below:

Good afternoon, Churchland High School families - 

At this time, due to an increased number of COVID-19 cases at the school, Churchland will need to temporarily return to virtual learning. The school will be virtual tomorrow, May 12 and Friday, May 13. In addition, all afterschool and extracurricular activities through this weekend are also cancelled. The school will then be back to normal operations Monday, May 16.

Live instruction will be taking place. Students are expected to log into all four classes at the beginning of each block utilizing the Zoom link located on their Schoology class page. Students will be marked present for each class based on attendance in the live zoom session and/or completion of assigned work. You can find the schedule on the virtual learning school hours page on ppsk12.us. 

Please note that both breakfasts and lunches will be available from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the school for families to pick up. In addition, a school bus will be traveling with meals that will also be available for pick up with the following schedule: 

6:30 a.m. - Brandon Ln & Picadilly Lane; Peachtree Ln E & Sugar Creek Circle; Hartford Street & Lanier Crescent

6:40 a.m. - Dogwood Dr & Daisy Dr; Kenny Ln & Tejo Ln;  Wesley Street & Maryland Ave

6:50 a.m. - Riverpointe Dr & Riverpointe Pkwy; Hatton Point & Granada Rd

Please know this virtual learning period could be extended, if necessary. You can see the division’s latest quarantine guidance and protocols on the division’s COVID-19 supports page. 

As always, we thank you for your continued support of Churchland High School.


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