Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction to tour all school divisions in Commonwealth

TAZEWELL, VA (WOAY) – The Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction is touring all school divisions in the Commonwealth. 

When James Lane, the Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction, was appointed in 2018, he made it one his goals to tour all school divisions in the Commonwealth. His team’s objective is to simply learn more about the schools and how they’ve been holding up, especially during the pandemic. 

“One of the things we wanted to talk to people about is how the Department of Education can support all of our school divisions, especially during this difficult time. And we generally just want to see how our schools are operating and the safety protocols they’ve put in place, so we can learn more about how we can be responsive,” Lane said.

One key thing they’re focusing on is how schools have been fairing with hybrid learning. Many students are still having issues with the shift to online learning, and sometimes switching back and forth can put a toll on faculty and students. 

“A lot of our school divisions are virtual, and many of them are in-person and hybrid. I think our school divisions continue to need resources for PPE, masks, cleaning supplies. I think there is also a significant need for broadband. We’re having that as we tour the schools, so students have access to the internet at home.”

Despite the challenges the schools are facing, Lane says the faculty and staff at the schools he has visited have been very creative with their problem solving, and wants to share that information with the Department of Education. 

“One of the things that I know I’ll share with my staff when we get to the Department of Education is how creative our superintendents and school boards are. This has been a really challenging time, and to see the way our leaders have responded is impressive. And on top of that, what our teachers are doing to rebuild their curriculums is just really impressive.”

The tour only just started this week, but by the end of it, Lane and his team will have visited every school division in Southwest Virginia. 

James Lane was appointed by the Governor of Virginia and has been serving since June of 2018.