In last week’s McLean County Board of Education meeting, board members opted to continue as scheduled with Fall sports. In-person classes continue to be suspended following Gov. Andy Beshear’s executive order.

“The governor has given executive orders. This is not a recommendation, it’s an executive order … basically, it’s all public and privately owned elementary, middle and high schools kindergarten through grad 12 shall cease in-person instruction and transition to remote, virtual instruction,” said superintendent Tommy Burrough.

The order went into effect Monday, Nov. 23.

Per the executive order, middle and high school students will continue virtual learning through Jan. 4, while kindergarten through fifth grades may resume in-person learning only if the county falls short of the “critical zone” on the state-wide incidence rating map.

A county is considered “critical” at above 25% on the map. As of Monday, McLean sits at 74.5% with only 3 of Kentucky’s 120 counties below the “critical” zone.

Schools may still continue with in-person, targeting instruction for small groups of students under the executive order.

Burrough also used the meeting to address concern about rumored cancellation or suspension of the upcoming Winter sports season for schools.

“There’s been a rumor out there that we were shutting down Winter sports. That was never, ever said,” he said. “There’s not going to be a suspension or cancellation of any Winter sports. We’re not even going to discuss that. It’s going to be following KHSAA guidelines.”

The Kentucky High School Athletic Association voted earlier this week to postpone Winter sports until Jan. 4 with practices starting Dec. 14. Winter sports were originally scheduled to begin Monday, Nov. 23.

The board also voted to continue with the remainder of fall sports season as scheduled. However, there was discussion over whether continuing with sports was an appropriate choice while students are doing virtual instruction.

“My personal opinion is, if we’re not in school, we don’t need to play football or any other sport, for that matter, but I was not elected to give my personal opinion. I was elected to represent a group of people,” said board member Angela Bumpus.

Bumpus said her vote would be based on the constituency she represents, noting that she was taking into account the opinions of all of the residents that had contacted her regarding the issue.

A motion was made to suspend fall sports, which died without being seconded.

“I’ve always thought if we’re not in school, we don’t need to be playing sports. Now, that’s me, that’s not the group that I was elected for,” said board member Stephen Riggs.

Christie Netherton, cnetherton@mcleannews.com, 270-691-7360

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