BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Nearly 900,000 students in Maryland will have to continue learning online for at least four additional weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
That means school districts are scrambling to find the best ways to teach its students.
Baltimore City Public Schools 79,000 thousand students are among those across Maryland now learning from home.
The department is now uploading material to their website, but the question remains: What about the kids who do not have adequate access to the internet?
In a phone conference, Baltimore City Schools CEO Dr. Sonja Santelises told reporters that’s one of her biggest concerns.
“It’s a challenge for our students and your families,” Santelises said. “We are dramatically changing the way we deliver our instruction.”“
“One of the things that principals have been wanting to remind us of is that they and teachers have the intimate relationships with families,” Santelises added. “So we will also be relying on the intel from the ground.”
The district said they’ll be doing surveys online, over the phones or even at the city’s foods distribution sites to find families who may need help getting internet access.
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“We are exploring ideas with internet providers as partners who are really trying to work with us to think creatively to support wireless access,” Santelises said.
They are also working on getting chrome books to students, but juniors and seniors will have priority because there’s not enough to go around.
One parent WJZ spoke to has a 6 and 11-year-old. She also has a background in education and is worried some students may fall through the cracks.
“I’m definitely concerned some of the kids will fall through the cracks,” she said. “Not everybody is going to get up every day and log onto their computer and log into their classroom. Not everybody is going to go every week and pickup a packet.”
Another concern Santelises addressed was the homeless students. She said Baltimore City Schools has been working hand in hand with local organizations to deliver meals and to figure out some of the other concerns students may have.