By Cara Beth Lewis
UPDATE: On Sunday, January 9th, BladenOnline shared emails that were sent to students of East and West Bladen High School, informing that school for this week would be virtual due to staffing shortages.
BladenOnline staff asked Bladen County Schools Superintendent, Dr. Jason Atkinson, whether the staffing shortages were due to COVID, or if there was a lack of staff for other reasons. Additionally, several parents have been concerned about whether or not the same issues would happen in other schools across the county, as Bladen is currently experiencing a surge in positive COVID cases.
Dr. Atkinson stated, “The staffing issues at East and West were due to the number of positive COVID-19 cases and exposures that took employees out of work. As of right now, there are no other schools at that point yet, however, this could change at any time depending on the cases and exposures that are reported to us.”
According to emails sent to Bladen County students from Principal Peggy Hester and Assistant Principal Glenda Matthis, West Bladen and East Bladen High Schools are both virtual this week due to “staffing shortages.”
Update- Two of the three local high schools will be virtual. Bladen Early College High School is still open for in person. No further information is available at this time.