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Protesters speak out against remote learning, canceled sports in WV

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CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – Hundreds of West Virginia students, parents and guardians lined up at the state capitol in protest of the West Virginia color-coded system and just one week into the school year.

The protesters say they want to see school and sports start up again. They gathered to wait on Gov. Justice prior to his 12:30 p.m. press conference.

“This has gone on long enough. We’ve complied for months. Now they’ve started this color code system. It’s not working, and it seems like it’s discriminatory to different counties,” Kristy Sorrell, Parent said.

Parents and students say remote leaning is just not working because of access to the internet.

“We’ve been having to go other places just to try to get that for them, so the remote learning is not going good for our kids,” Alisha Deskins, Parent said.

“When the teachers were explaining stuff to us on those calls, we really didn’t understand anything at all. We haven’t learned anything from it so far.” Jaxon Mills, Student-athlete said.

Parents argue that schools have stayed open through other viruses like the flu and have overcome those challenges. 

“There’s always a fear with any type of virus, but we haven’t shut down schools for any other type of thing. The numbers show it’s low risk for children,” Sorrell said.

“This has gotten out of control. These kids want to go back to school. they want to play,” Deskins said.

Friday, Justice announced schools in the orange level on the state’s County Alert System would not be able to hold in-person classes and must move to virtual learning.

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice arrives at the State Capitol building in Charleston for a press conference amid protesters speaking out against remote learning and canceled sports. Sept. 14, 2020. (Photo Credit: WOWK 13 News Photographer Elbert Mosley)

As of 10 a.m. Monday, Sept. 14, Putnam, Kanawha, Fayette, Lincoln, Boone, Logan, Mingo, Monroe, Pocahontas, Calhoun and Ohio counties are orange and Monongalia County remains red.

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