Pasco County Schools will not offer pandemic-related virtual learning next year, superintendent says

Pasco County

PASCO COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — The Pasco County superintendent announced Tuesday that the county will only provide in-person learning again starting this fall.

Superintendent of Schools Kurt Browning said the county will no longer offer the mySchool Online option next school year “based on trends, data, and our goal of doing what’s best for our students and staff.”

This option was created in the early days of the pandemic.

“Despite our best efforts, our data show that many students that opted for mySchool Online are not succeeding academically and would benefit from a return to in-person learning,” Browning announced.

He also cited mental health challenges students have faced learning at home during the pandemic.

During the course of the 2020-21 school year, the percentage of students attending class in person has increased steadily. Roughly 76 percent of students are currently enrolled traditional schooling.

As a parent of teenage boys Jackie Borree is a fan of the return to class but she believes there should be more safeguards in place than pre COVID-19.

“It can’t be a free for all. We have to have more safeguards in place. The teachers have to be held more accountable,” Boree said.

The superintendent said there will be no changes to Pasco eSchool which for parents like Jamie Watkins leaves her at ease.

“If parents want to have their kids do online or go to school it should be their choice. They should offer the online option even without the pandemic,” Watkins said.

8 On Your Side reached out to a number of school districts and most are still waiting to make an announcement on the next school year.

Manatee County is the only other county that has reached out to parents, letting them know online learning prompted by the pandemic will not be offered.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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