CMS family considers virtual learning options to minimize risk of exposure for child with disability

“I will do what needs to be done to keep my kids safe...anybody would,” says Charlotte Mecklenburg School mom, Stacy Staggs.

Family interested in virtual school option

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - With just over a month away until North Carolina schools are set to reopen on August 17, families are trying to prepare as best as they can.

“I will do what needs to be done to keep my kids safe... anybody would,” says Charlotte-Mecklenburg School mom Stacy Staggs.

Staggs’ daughter, Emma, is no stranger to remote learning. For the past two years she’s been learning from home. Emma’s breathing disability means two trained nurses must be with her in the classroom while at school.

Staggs says that CMS recently signed off on providing her the care she needs so she could safely get back to learning in the classroom this fall.

But that goal was before the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There’s no way Emma can step foot into a classroom at this point, she is very high risk for severity if she were to contract the infection,” says Staggs.

Staggs says it’s not just Emma that likely wont be going back - if there is in-person instruction come fall.

Emma’s twin sister Sara would also learn remotely—to minimize risk of bringing exposure into their home.

“We’ve talked to all of our doctors, it’s really not a good idea for either girl to be in school,” says Staggs. “And to be around all that exposure.”

CMS says they’re looking into a fully remote K-8 option families could choose, instead of in person learning.

Students and teachers would stay assigned to their current school.

Just like for Emma who is in the EC program, all EC, English Learner and Talent Development needs would be accommodated.

“The option of K through 8 remote...I think that a lot of people, a lot of families will take advantage of that,” says Staggs. “Just because of the health risks. I mean, it’s not just the kids, but also the teachers, the support staff, the families that they go home to.”

WBTV asked CMS representatives for clarification as to if this remote K-8 option will be offered regardless of which plan CMS chooses come fall.

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