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D11 offering tools, advice for parents overwhelmed with online teaching

School district offering resources, tools for parents tackling online teaching
Posted at 10:45 AM, Apr 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-21 21:08:29-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — On Monday, Governor Polis announced that Colorado classrooms will remain closed for the rest of this school year, which means many students will be finishing out the semester online.

Many families with students in Colorado Springs School District 11 have reached out sharing concerns their kids are falling behind, even if though that may not necessarily be the case.

"We're hearing that a lot quite a bit across the country because families across the country are feeling that it's an overwhelming experience, and rightly so," said Devra Ashby, a spokesperson for Colorado Springs School District 11.

That's because distance learning differs from the school days families are used to.

"It's going to be a lot more brief," Ashby said. "In fact, you know, working with your student for 20 minutes, 30 minutes on a topic and then taking a break is perfectly fine."

To ease the stress, D11 is providing resources to families within their school district, and beyond.

They provided 2000 students with laptops and built a distance learning website with D11 learning tools, or free ones for anyone to access.

And while learning is important, the district says emotional health should come first.

"We're asking families to take a breath and take a pause and have grace with themselves and patience with themselves and with technology and with their instructors," Ashby emphasized. "While we work out some of these challenges as we move forward."

Many D11 teachers are following a recommendation from the Colorado Department of Education to pause third quarter grades, giving students a chance to improve them next quarter.

"You can only get better from here, as we figure out a system that's really gonna work long-term," Ashby said.

And remember, teachers are there to help.

"They miss those kids," Ashby added. "So, if at any time those students do feel like they need to reach out one-on-one to their teachers, by all means, please reach out to your teachers."

By reaching out and tapping into these resources, families will discover different ways to turn their new normal into a long-term success.