Connect-OR Ending at the end of this School Year

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.

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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