Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos visited Thales Academy on Wednesday in Apex, North Carolina.
This visit by the members of the Trump administration comes as most school districts across the country are announcing schools with limit attendance to virtual and online classes to start the upcoming school year.
Thales Academy, as a school, has bucked the virtual class trend and decided that its students will be attending in-person classes this upcoming school year.
“We’ve got to get our kids back to school. We’ve got to get them back this fall,” Pence said at Thales Academy, according to WRAL. “It’s best for our kids. It’s best for working families. It’s best for North Carolina and best for all of America.”
While Pence was at the Thales Academy, he chatted with fourth-grade students. Fourth-grade teacher Allison Combs, the teacher of the class Pence visited, said that she is happy to be in class teaching again even with additional health measurements, according to WRAL.
“Virtual learning was challenging. We made it work because that’s what we had to do,” Combs said. “But losing that interaction with students made the work even harder. … Just having those interactions and building those relationships, it’s a lot easier when you’re here in person.”
After visiting fourth-graders, the vice president participated in a roundtable discussion on reopening schools.
“But we’re here today because to open up America, we’ve got open up America schools, the vice president said during the round table discussion. “And Thales Academy is literally in the forefront, with your outstanding leadership here, your administrators, and your classroom teachers in doing just that.”
Pence noted that Thales Academy is at the “forefront” of how to properly reopen schools in America.
The vice president made it very clear that he thinks schools should be open.
“And let’s be very clear: The one thing that we know, studying the data from around America and around the world, is the risk the coronavirus poses to healthy children is very low,” he said. And we believe that with the right measures in place, we can safely operate our schools, just as you’re doing here at this great private school in North Carolina.”
At the end of the round table, Pence thanked Thales Academy Founder Bob Luddy for having him at his school.
“So let me thank you, Bob Luddy, and the great team here at Thales Academy. Thank you again for the hospitality. Thank you for your example,” he concluded. “Thank you for proving that even through all the days through which we passed and the sacrifices that all of us have made, that we can continue to open up North Carolina again and also open up North Carolina’s schools in a safe and responsible way.”
Thales Academy thanked Pence for coming to visit:
Today was an incredible day for Thales Academy! Vice President of the United States Mike Pence came to visit Mrs. Comb’s 4th Grade class at Thales Academy Apex K-5. He was then joined by US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, Congressman Mark Walker, Congressman Richard Hudson, Congressman David Rouzer, and State Senator Deanna Ballard, along with Mr. Luddy and several of our teachers and administrators for a roundtable discussion about reopening schools in America and the example that Thales Academy has provided for other schools. It was a very great honor to host our Vice President and other distinguished guests, and our students enjoyed the opportunity to meet with him.
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Zachery Schmidt is the digital editor of Star News Digital Media. If you have any tips, email Zachery at [email protected]. Follow Zachery on Twitter @zacheryschmidt2.
Photo “Mike Pence and Bob Luddy” by Thales Academy.