Bucks parents, students rally after school district goes virtual through Nov. 11

BUCKS COUNTY, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Initially, the Central Bucks School District was going to offer several options in person, hybrid and online learning.

But on Monday, the district announced that due to staffing issues, all students in the district will start the year 100 percent virtually for the first marking period, through Nov. 11.

Students gathered at Central Bucks West High School Saturday to support teachers, support staff and aides.

The district says many of its employees were unable to return to teach in person because of pandemic related issues.

Down the street from the student rally, a group of parents assembled as a counter-protest, saying 100 percent virtual school has created child care issues and felt they did not have any input into the decision that was made this week.

Action News spoke with participants from both rallies.

"Because the superintendent making this decision to move all classes online, has forced them to change their curriculum multiple times," said Sara Zheng, Central Bucks East senior. "We're just trying to show all the staff and the aides here that we still love them and appreciate them. Especially all the hard work that they're doing right now."

Mayor Ron Strouse of Doylestown Borough said, "We're fighting a pandemic. The numbers in PA in Bucks County have been going in the right direction. "Our attention has to be to make sure that continues."

Lauren Feldman, a Central Bucks parent said, "My son personally does not do well with virtual learning. The spring didn't go well at our household, it was difficult. Parents also have to work. It's another aspect to it we can't stay home forever with our kids. We have to contribute to our economy and do the right things for our society."

In a message from the superintendent posted online, he said over the next few weeks officials will evaluate staffing, as well as working immediately to hire enough employees to return to the in-person and hybrid models they originally had in place.
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