Tearing your hair out over remote learning?

How parents can deal with online education crises

How parents can deal with online education crises

Kids in tears of frustration after hours in front of the computer. Grades marked down for absence when the wifi crashed or the child forget to press “Send” to turn in an assignment. Parents expected to be on hand as learning coaches. If your family teeters daily on the edge of meltdown, you're not alone. Review these suggestions for standing up for your family's needs.

Find allies. The problems do not generally originate with teachers, who are under demands from school districts and government agencies. However, you'll have to relate to the teacher, in a non-judgmental way, and it helps if you have allies. Meet periodically with the parents of your child's classmates, discuss the issues, and then designate a representative to talk with the teacher and seek solutions.

Set standards. Children should not be penalized for broken links or missing information. Negotiate with the teacher to establish procedures for dealing with problems that are not the children's responsibility.

Maintain communication with teachers. Either through a parents' group representative, if many children are having the same problem, or on your own, if it's an issue specific to your child, consult with teachers to problem-solve. Make sure to work cooperatively, not combatively. Teachers are under a lot of pressure too.

Advocate for your child. Whatever is going wrong, you may be able to come up with creative solutions to propose. From taking more frequent screen breaks to reducing the number of assignments, see if you and the teacher can find a compromise that will lessen the tension for your child.

Document the situation. Take notes on the challenges your child is facing and the conferences you have with the teacher, in case you need to refer to them down the line.

Create social time. Sitting in a virtual classroom involves less social interaction than sitting in a classroom. Ask the teacher to schedule group projects or occasional conversations among kids.

Go up the line of command if necessary. If your child's needs aren't being met, you may need to contact the principal or guidance counselor for additional arrangements.

The issues we are facing are being exacerbated by the changing school schedules, and because kids, teachers and you as a parent are never sure what is coming next. It is not like the kids met the bus at 7:15am and came home by 2pm.  Parents now have had to accept a more hands-on role.

Thanks to Parent.com for suggesting some ways to handle the situation you are now facing.


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