‘We won’t get to say goodbye’: Teachers react to Gov. Cooper’s remote learning extension

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The new reality is setting in for teachers and parents – North Carolina schools will remain closed and students will continue remote learning for the remainder of the school year.

The announcement came from Governor Roy Cooper Friday afternoon at a media briefing.

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Some educators expected the call, but they say they are still disappointed they won’t be back in the classroom this school year.

“It actually broke my heart,” Pine Valley Elementary teacher Dorian Barnes said.

“I’m really disappointed,” another Pine Valley teacher Kelly Crowley said. “I know it’s for the good of humanity to keep us healthy and keep us alive and safe, and I’m good with that. But I’m going to miss their faces.”

Crowley says it’s especially hard since their school is redistricting next year.

“Several of our kids are going to start next year at a new school and we won’t get to say goodbye,” Crowley said.

Parents say they’re just trying to roll with the punches after finding out remote learning would continue for the rest of the school year.

“I kind of anticipated that, based on it being delayed out until May,” mom Telisa Claudio said.

Governor Cooper’s announcement to keep all K-12 public school buildings closed was a tough pill to swallow for teachers and parents. Barnes says they’ve just got to keep going.

“I think right now, it’s just consistency, and making sure the students know they have something to look forward to every week,” Barnes said.

However, just because the actual schools are closed to students, education isn’t over.

“Learning is not. The building is closed, but learning is not. And we’re already planning something for the last day of school. In my mind, I’ve already started turning about, ‘how can we still celebrate the last day of school?'” Pine Valley Elementary teacher Desiree Taylor said.

At home, parents are just trying to make it work.

“We’ll just kind of keep up the schedule we have,” Claudio said.

“We’ll pull through and do what we need to do, but we definitely will feel it, and it’s hard being home. The distance learning really makes me appreciate our teachers and our schools,” mom Nicole Davis said.