“Here we are after having 2020 of no schools, no summer programmes, now we have in 2021 basically no schools, no summer programmes once again,” Bishop Cline complained during the July 27, 2021, edition of the My BVI show alongside co-host, Angelle A. Cameron.
“For two years you cannot convince me that online education is effective in a culture where we have been trained and we have trained our students for in-class, in-person learning, they don't just make that transition just like that,” he went on to say.
Bishop Cline hinted that as a result of the prolonged school closures and virtual learning, children are missing out on vital schooling that can only be done effectively through in-class teaching.
“If we're not careful we can raise [and] pretty much lose a generation because these children are not like us… I've learned quite a bit and I can still learn but these children are dynamic,” he said.
While the CDC has made recommendations for the safe re-opening of schools, the VI has had to close school doors as a result of a recent virus outbreak with cases spiking to more than 1,600 within a matter of days.
“If you're not careful we can end up with a bunch of illiterates, mathematically challenged generation,” Bishop Cline said.
The VI government has been pushing COVID-19 vaccination as a safe way to get back to normalcy and mitigate the effects of the virus should other outbreaks happen.