A teacher at an elementary school in the D.C. suburb of Northern Virginia was seen on video holding class outdoors in sub-freezing weather Tuesday according to a post by a parents group. COVID fears have led schools around the country to make children take classes or eat lunch outdoors in cold weather. (Update at end.)
A photo and video each show a teacher reading to students bundled up against the 24-degree cold who were sitting on the sidewalk between piles of snow in front of Waynewood Elementary, located a few miles south of Alexandria in the Fort Hunt area of Fairfax County.
The Fairfax County Parents Association, which describes itself as a “Nonpartisan group representing thousands of Fairfax County parents prioritizing children over politics in public education,” posted:
“It’s well below freezing in Fairfax County, yet young children are having story time on the cold concrete outside at @waynewoodes. This is the result of poor leadership and confusing guidance to teachers. Get these little ones inside! @FCPSSupt @fcpsnews @fairfaxhealth…Video of the elementary school kids sitting in 24 degrees (that’s Fahrenheit, below freezing) at @waynewoodes today. This is Virginia, where kids don’t routinely wear down and wool. @Karen4Schools @FCPSSupt @fcpsnews”
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Video of the elementary school kids sitting in 24 degrees (that’s Fahrenheit, below freezing) at @waynewoodes today. This is Virginia, where kids don’t routinely wear down and wool. @Karen4Schools @FCPSSupt @fcpsnews pic.twitter.com/6scCWizHEy
— Fairfax County Parents Association (@FFXParentsAssoc) January 11, 2022
The video shows the teacher has most of the kids sitting in the shade as she stands in front of them holding a book.
There does not appear to be any comment yet by school officials.
A local weather chart shows the temperatures for Tuesday in the area styed in the mid-20s for most of the day.
Update: National Review reported a statement by Fairfax County Public Schools:
“This morning on Twitter, an anonymous parent group posted a video that was taken outside of Waynewood Elementary School in Alexandria. In the video, a group of third grade students are taking a snack and mask break in front of the school,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “The weather conditions were monitored, and the students were outside for less than seven minutes. The teacher was reading a story to keep the students entertained. Students do go outside for mask and snack breaks in cold weather, but that time is limited.”