Children — and caretakers — struggle to connect to Omaha schools’ virtual learning programs

Published: Aug. 28, 2020 at 3:57 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 28, 2020 at 7:23 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Omaha Public Schools officials say students are engaged and eager to learn as the district continues to follow its 100% remote-learning plan.

OPS decided to go to remote learning to keep students and staff safe during the pandemic. But there’s a Florence-area childcare center that believes that right now remote learning is not working, and a big part of that is because students are having a hard time connecting.

There are around 40 school-aged children at Crayon Castle Child Care, where the director says the children have to be here because their parents have to work.

The first thing you notice, no one is wearing a mask. But director Jacque Casey says the problem here is with connectivity.

“We can actually get on the computer for maybe, maybe some of the morning a little bit of the morning for some kids, other kids who get on it kicks you off they cannot even connect to the classroom,” Casey said.

Casey said these students would be better off in a classroom, especially since they’re having a tough time getting the students hooked up to their remote learning classes.

OPS officials issued a statement that reads in part: “Families with connectivity questions may reach out to our schools and technology team to identify solutions. We are also working with our mobile provider as they receive feedback and adapt to meet the evolving needs during this time.”

Casey says she expects to be critiqued because no staff or students were wearing masks when we came to visit and social distancing was not present, but she says her concerns are with the students and their education.

“You know we have that big mantra all the time social-emotional physical wellbeing of our children that is out the door but that is not… the children are not being thought about, they really aren’t,” Casey said.

OPS will continue to offer in-person support for questions related to technology, counseling, nutritional services, and other questions families might have at Morton Middle School through at least September.

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