Schools closed in Bedford, Amherst counties and more due to wildfire smoke

Multiple counties in the ABC13 viewing area have school closures thanks to bad air quality conditions from wildfire smoke.

Early Monday morning, the Bedford County Public Schools said all schools in the county would be closed for the day. The update follows their original plan announced Sunday, which was to hold class after a two-hour delay.

Due to the shifting winds, all Bedford County Public Schools will be closed (Code 1) today Monday, November 20, 2023.

SEE ALSO: Matts Creek wildfire grows to 7,614 acres with 15 percent containment

Rockbridge County Schools announced over Facebook that all of their schools would be closed on Monday and Tuesday.

Below is the statement they put on Facebook:

RCPS has been communicating with local officials from Rockbridge County and regional officials from the U.S. Forest Service who are tasked with managing the Matt’s Creek/Big Island forest fire. While we are grateful for the somewhat more clear conditions today for much of Rockbridge County, we are being told that there is a very high possibility that winds will shift overnight and into tomorrow bringing increasing smoky conditions back to our side of the mountain and into the I-81 corridor. We were hoping to be able to get students back into our classrooms for Monday and the 2-hour early release day on Tuesday. However, out of an abundance of caution, Rockbridge County Public Schools will be closed for Monday, November 20 and Tuesday, November 21. We hope you all remain safe and have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. We greatly look forward to seeing our students and staff again on Monday, November 27.

Happy Thanksgiving to all our Rockbridge County families!

Buena Vista Public Schools also announced over Facebook that they would be closed on Monday due to the air quality.

Below is a statement they posted on Facebook:

Due to updated information from the US Forestry Department regarding forecasted air quality, BVCPS will be closed on Monday, November 20th (Code 1). Thank you in advance for your understanding as we navigate this evolving situation.

Lexington City Schools is also closing schools both Monday and Tuesday.

Below is a statement school leaders posted to Facebook:

Lexington City Schools has been communicating with our local officials and with air quality resource advisors from the U.S. Forest Service who are managing the forest fires impacting our area. As of this evening, we are being told that there is a high probability for increased smoky conditions returning to the Lexington area tomorrow which will negatively impact our air quality levels. We had hoped to have students and faculty return to school tomorrow and Tuesday for a two-hour early release day. However, with the information provided, Lexington City Schools will be CLOSED on Monday, November 20th and Tuesday, November 21st.

We look forward to having everyone back in school on Monday, November 27th. We wish our Lexington City Schools community a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

On Monday Morning Amherst County Public Schools announced they would be cancelling school due to the smoke.

Due to poor air quality Amherst County Public Schools will be closed today, November 20, 2023. Employee Code 1.


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