Duncan Public Schools uses virtual days

Sydney Miller and Presley Sanders

During this current week, Duncan Middle School had three “virtual days” and two regular snow days because of the weather.

This Wednesday and Thursday were not made into virtual days because of many students having power and connectivity issues throughout the district. To fix this, principals are said to have been meeting virtually to adjust and prepare for future virtual days.

Today has been made into a virtual day, and it is a possibility that Monday could be as well on account of snow still on the ground.

In-person learning will not be an option until the weather conditions allow safe travel. Based on the Monday and Tuesday forecast, there is a possibility that students and Duncan Public Schools staff could go back to in-school learning for the starting of the week.

Students and teachers need to be prepared for any situation in the future, which might include more winter weather and virtual learning days. The forecast is not completely predicted, but students and staff will be ready for anything that comes their way. 

There are many factors that can contribute to the consideration of virtual learning. One of the main factors is if the roads are driveable. The Duncan buses have to drive these routes daily, so it is important that they are safe enough for the buses to make their travel.

This weather is also important when it comes to the new drivers of Duncan. Many students that attend Duncan High School are new drivers, which means they have never experienced this kind of extreme driving conditions. 

Despite the ongoing pandemic that forced several schools in Oklahoma to switch to virtual for even a little while, Duncan hasn’t had any official “virtual days” up until the recent weather.

Tom Deighan, Duncan Public Schools superintendent, is grateful to even regularly be in school with the pandemic.

“We have been fortunate to be in school all year without the disruptions experienced in other districts,” Deighan said.

Deighan also says that we would have been out of school either way whether the district went virtual or not, so having virtual days can create a kind of flexibility.

“While virtual instruction is not the answer to every ‘snow day,’ it certainly provides us with new options as long as we continue to refine and improve it for staff, students, and parents,” Deighan said.