TN Education Commissioner visits Loudon County schools to observe in-person and virtual learning


LOUDON COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — State leaders toured two Loudon County schools Friday to observe in-person and virtual learning.

Tennessee Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn and Lieutenant Governor Randy McNally visited Loudon Elementary and Lenoir City Intermediate to see for themselves what learning during a pandemic looks like for students and teachers.

“I need to see how things are going, make sure that if there’s anything we can do as a state, we’re helping out. I also get a lot of energy. It’s my favorite part. And so I can do my job best when I see how our amazing teachers and principals and superintendents are doing their jobs and I get to be with the kids,” Commissioner Schwinn said.

The visit showed the efforts from the schools to make the environment safe and comfortable for students and staff.

“I think it’s important for them to know what’s going on out there and where we are in comparison to other states and just to see the things that people in the trenches are doing every day,” Lenoir City Intermediate Principal, Brandee Hoglund, said.

There were empty classrooms where teachers were conducting virtual classes, and classrooms doing in-person learning where the students wore masks.

“You’re seeing students spaced, you’re seeing really innovative practices with technology, and most importantly you’re seeing teachers who care deeply about their kids and are showing that everyday in the classroom and you saw that today and it’s inspiring, it’s encouraging and I’m very optimistic,” Commissioner Schwinn said.

The commissioner says she will be visiting schools across the state every week for the foreseeable future as they continue to adjust to new learning environments.


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