"THANK YOU to Mr. Tennis for being the only person to listen to parents, make decisions in the best interest of the children and staff! Thankfully he attempted to put into practice, what he stated in the voter pamphlet! Thank you for recognizing that most children need the social interaction that they receive at school! My neighbor’s daughter has come to me and shared her thoughts of wanting to end her life! Please put an end to this insanity.... Schools are ESSENTIAL!!!!!
I work for the district as a substitute health assistant and parent aide. I would also volunteer in class weekly and assisted kids who were below grade level, in addition to working in small groups with the rest of the class. I have had to stop working (no longer allowed to volunteer in the class either) altogether to get all the kids to and from their 2 (elementary) or 3 (jr. high) hour days, speech and tutoring sessions.
I have 4 foster children, and one adopted child and one biological child in the home. Of the 6 kids, 5 of them have a significant history of trauma and neglect. Each one of them is behind, in all aspects of life... Their education, as it was before the school closures, and shortened days, was a challenge. I have seen firsthand how this has slowed their growth and I work tirelessly to keep them moving forward. This time at school, is not just supporting their educational needs, it helps improve their social and emotional needs as well! These kids have had extremely difficult beginnings and struggle with impulse control, time management and routine. Some key points practiced at school help them listen to adults, learn how to be polite, take turns and how to be a friend!
Two of the 5 kids I mentioned, have an IEP, and I am not able to get them the additional support they need. I have reached out to their teachers as one of the kiddos won’t complete her online assignments... They said, feel free to join the zoom class for support... Not even close to a good fit for her! Her attention span is too limited, she doesn’t want to ask questions because she doesn’t like to draw attention to herself... The lack of in-person accountability provided by teaching staff and the “new way” of teaching children, is quite different than when I went to school! I can only do so much.
My youngest child is bright and has had the hardest time adjusting to hours of online learning, where some students are limited in their initial grasp to understand new topics. When these ideas are explained over and over, he was near tears as he was ready to move on, and a handful of students still need additional support. The teacher was definitely doing a great job of educating her students, mine just happened to be ready to move on faster than some of the other kids. He would become bored and check out... Months and months of this, with no end in sight, forced us to move him to independent study. He misses his friends, he misses recess and he misses his teacher. It is so sad to see his love of school, completely disappear, in this last year."