SUMTER COUNTY, S.C. — Digital classes are the new reality for students in homes across South Carolina as schools close their doors to guard against the coronavirus.
Allison Eady’s son Carter is a first grader in Sumter. When she first found out that schools would be closed through the month of March, she worried what would happen next.
“I was like oh my gosh, what are we going to do for one or two weeks, three weeks, however long this may last,” Eady said. “Just trying to figure out how to keep him learning. Not to let this be a dip in his education.”
The Sumter School District joined schools across the state by transitioning to a system of online learning.
As she sat alongside her son for instruction on his tablet, Eady described the experience as “humbling.”
“For one student, my own child, I’m like hmm, how do I make this learnable for him,” Eady said. “Versus a teacher who has to make that learnable for 20 plus students, daily.”
Zach Lowe, an eighth-grade teacher in Sumter, says creating a schedule, offering support and reaching out to staff can help parents navigate the change.
“It’s setting some sort of standard that every single day for as long as we’re out of school that the child knows,” Lowe said. “It’s holding the children accountable for actually completing the work because, as much as we’d like to think that it is, it’s not a spring break.”
Eady says she’s taking it day-by-day and is thankful for the support of her son’s teacher and staff during the transition.
“From the videos that she sends us every morning, to the detailed instruction that she’s given us typed out on paper, it’s been phenomenal,” Eady said. “It’s just so relieving honestly to know that his education has been taken care of for the next two to three weeks.”
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