Reprinted from the Wildcat iNews from May 3, 2021
We would like to inform you that Oak Ridge Schools will not offer ConnectOR, a virtual learning program, for the 2021-22 school year.
This decision is the result of information recently received from the Tennessee Department of Education. On Monday, April 12 the state board of education extended a rule that requires virtual programs like ConnectOR to end when the Governor-declared state of emergency ends.
At a press conference on Monday afternoon Governor Lee announced, “In-person learning is safe and it’s the only way our students will get back on track after significant learning loss. I support the state Board of Education’s work to ensure that in-person learning is again the standard in TN and virtual learning is reserved for emergency use only.”
To continue virtual offerings outside of the state of emergency, school districts must apply to open a separate, standalone virtual school. Based on the size of Oak Ridge Schools, creating a standalone virtual school is cost prohibitive and could potentially reduce the face-to-face opportunities that are of great value to Oak Ridge students and teachers.