Make Virtual Academy an Option for ALL Kentucky Students

Make Virtual Academy an Option for ALL Kentucky Students

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AR McCrady started this petition to Governor Andy Beshear

Faced with impassioned constituents, rampant misinformation, and evolving - and often conflicting - guidance from politicians and public health officials, Kentucky School Boards have faced an impossible task. Left afloat to build plans for the 2021-2022 School Year, Boards across the Commonwealth have adopted disparate approaches to mask policies and virtual instruction services, seemingly informed by a desire to minimize legal exposure or constrained by limited resources, rather than with students’ best interests at heart. 

Similarly, families in many districts are now faced with gut-wrenching decisions. Each family across the Commonwealth considers numerous factors when deciding the best education plan for their children; priorities, with respect to academic needs, health, and emotional wellness of their children, household, and extended friends and family, are unique. 

What is best for one is not necessarily best for all. 

With COVID positivity rates rising state-wide and the increased threat of the Delta variant among the pediatric population, this is a non-partisan plea for Governor Beshear to extend the option for virtual instruction programs to all public school students from Kindergarten through 12th grade.    

This is NOT a call for all learners to return to Non-Traditional Instruction. 

We deeply value the benefits of in-person instruction for those who are able to continue. Additionally, we believe extending virtual options will actually improve schools’ abilities to keep children in classrooms for as many days as possible. However, one size does not fit all! There are families who, for a variety of reasons and legitimate needs, should have the freedom to opt into virtual academy.

This is NOT a call for a statewide mask mandate. 

This is simply a call to revisit Governor Beshear’s previously instituted guidance:

“First, every school must provide a meaningful virtual option to students whose families opt into it that cannot negatively impact the virtual students GPA, class rank, or other educational opportunity or recognition.” 

There is currently not a free, virtual public school option available to all Kentucky students. Students with special education needs do not have a virtual option which would sustain their Individual Learning Plans (ILPs) - either they compromise their individual needs and attend in-person instruction, or they forfeit all necessary services that the school would otherwise provide.

We strongly urge education officials to work to devise a scalable virtual solution - whether through a state-led program or district cooperative initiative -  that alleviates the operational and financial burden from individual districts, ensuring no child is left behind to freely access a safe, consistent academic experience which meets the needs of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. 


5/13 CDC revises mask recommendations, vaccinated not longer required

6/11 KDE Healthy At School requirements rescinded

7/27 CDC revises mask guidance for schools

7/27 JCPS extends virtual learning to all grades

“We have had at least one instance of a school system that did not offer its AP classes virtually, meaning we had students that have pre-existing conditions that make COVID especially dangerous for them having to decide whether their class rank is going to be impacted. Or whether they were going to go into an environment they believed is unsafe to operate. In a red county with community transmission this high, we can’t require and we can’t allow students to have to make that choice,” added Gov. Beshear.

Thank you for signing and supporting the freedom of Kentucky families to make education choices for their children. 

0 have signed. Let’s get to 10,000!
At 10,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to get a reaction from the decision maker!