We have officially survived distance learning at my house, not before having to upgrade my internet speed due to multiple zoom classes and meetings each day. Although it was an adjustment, we are blessed that we have enough technology at home to accommodate three students.
The twins both completed college finals during the first week of May. My 7th grader had his last day of e-learning assignments on May 15, and today, he was allowed to clean out his locker, with social distancing in place.
Although it was a breath of fresh air to cross the hurdle of finishing e-learning for the 2019-20 school year, there are so many questions about what the upcoming 2020-21 school year will look like.
I am blessed to have an employer who was extremely understanding and allowed flexibility so that I, along with many of my co-workers, were able to assist our children with e-learning activities. Even with this flexibility, it was stressful working full time and overseeing my son’s distance learning. I definitely questioned my ability to effectively maintain proper oversight of his e-learning while working full time for an entire semester.
I’m also worried about how far behind he will fall without having face to face instruction daily. He has had many awesome teachers along the way, and this year, his math teacher was one of those teachers. My son struggles in math, and I’m not the best person to help with it. Mrs. Krueger took so much time that she did not have to take to work with my son after school, during math lab and study hall.
The additional time with math was obviously not as accessible with this school closure. I have enrolled him in math tutoring that will be conducted via zoom over the summer, in an effort to decrease some of the summer brain drain. Center for Leadership development is also offering free tutoring through its College Prep Institute.
Another concern for parents is childcare. If schools remain closed or on some sort of abbreviated schedule, those with young children are not only concerned about finding child care but also affordable childcare. With social distancing in place, those neighbors, friends, or grandparents that you would normally rely on may not be an option.
Last, but not least, will it be safe for our students and teachers to return to school in the fall? There is nothing I would like more than to return to some sort of normalcy, but I also want my son, his classmates, and teachers to remain healthy.
E-learning has been a huge transition for both my college students and my middle schooler. Even with so much uncertainty, I am remaining positive because I know my children are watching me and will follow my lead.