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Wausau parent group shares frustrations with virtual learning

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WAUSAU, Wis. (WAOW) -- A group of Wausau parents is asking the School Board to hold a special meeting and reinstate in-person learning.

"What's taking place is inaction. All other school districts around this county are back in school. To sit and be the only school district in this county that's not back in school, that's inaction," said parent Jon Creisher.

One mother expressed her concerns about students being left behind in the virtual format.

"I'm not comfortable with leaving behind all of those kids most at risk, the special ed kids, the kids from essential working families, the kids from low-income families, the kids in unsafe home environments," said parent Karen Vandernberg.

Parents also expressed concerns that their voices weren't a part of the decision to start the school year virtually.

"Letters were sent again because the board's meetings were not allowed to be held in public, instead of those comments being read in public it was just noted that they were sent in and again put aside," said parent Charles Burger.

However, board meeting agenda have stated that the public may attend meetings in-person. School Board President Tricia Zunker said that emailed public comment are also considered by the board.

"We've never come out and said people can't attend. We do have public comment that is received by email and that's treated the same way that public comment would be treated in-person," Zunker said.

Ultimately, Zunker said the board wants to see students back in their school buildings as soon as possible.

"It's a community effort and people need to wear their masks and wash their hands and practice safe social distancing. To the extent that everybody can do that, we'll get back in the building sooner," Zunker said.

The group of parents asked the board to respond to their request for a special meeting by Friday.

Zunker said the statute the group referred to for calling a special meeting isn't applicable.

Sarah McGrew

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