Ready to Start School?

Ready for School?

This week, we are ALL beginning a challenging start to the first week of school–students, parents, teachers, administrators, and advocates! 

As advocates, we get a broad and diverse view of how communities are attempting to handle virtual learning– and it’s all over the map!  Some parents are altering their work schedule to assist their children with their studies. Many parents, with more financial resources, have connected with neighbors or other parents in the school to hire tutors and set up learning pods. A great deal of parents are relying on family, friends, and neighbors for care and support while they work. And, others are still trying to figure it out. On average, everyone is doing the best they can with the resources they have. But, is it enough for our students?

What we see most clearly, as advocates, are the whopping disparities in education based on access to resources and support that have been sitting in front of us all along. These disparities are unacceptable and we must work together and work diligently to close these gaps by investing equitably in our education system–starting with early education on up.

Right now, we know everyone involved is doing their best to adapt to this challenging environment, but we believe it is imperative that DC government leaders be even more attentive to the students and families still without all the necessary resources to learn successfully. And, work with advocates and community leaders to better coordinate the resources that actually do exist. 

For instance, child care and out-of-school time programs can be of great support especially during this time, but city leaders must rise to the moment by consulting with programs on models that work best to support distance learning for students; collaborate with programs on any in-person care to help students that need extra support; and directly communicate new or shifting plans to students and their families. 

Our DC Action team hosted a virtual town hall on coordinating care during virtual learning, but it was just the first in a series. We pledge to continue monitoring the disparities in virtual learning for our students and will continue working with DC government leaders to respond. Please share what you’re seeing and experiencing, too. You can use this form to submit directly to our team.