WATCH: Gov. Northam to expand educational resources during the outbreak, encourages Virginians to continue social distancing

Coronavirus

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Gov. Ralph Northam gave an update on how the coronavirus outbreak was impacting Virginia and what they were doing to combat it on Monday

While he said closing down k-12 schools was a necessary decision, Northam said he realizes it has been hard and has exposed inequities between students.

To address this the governor said they would be expanding Virtual Virginia, an existing online educational platform. Northam said they will give every public school teacher in the state access to the website.

In addition to web resources, Northam said the state would also expand the kind of resources it has available for students, such as creating virtual classrooms that can be loaded onto devices that don’t have internet, and broadcasting lessons on several TV channels.

Northam said they are now using a Virginia specific model from the University of Virginia. He said it showed social distancing is successful in slowing the spread, but if they lift it too soon the number of cases will spike higher and earlier.

“Right now social distancing best too to fight this,” Northam said.

There are currently 5,747 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Virginia and 149 deaths from the virus.

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