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Our readersApril 17, 2020
Photo by Jessica Lewis on Unsplash

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools across the United States have moved from classroom learning to at-home or online instruction. America surveyed parents to see how their families have adapted to schooling at home. Of those who responded to our survey, the majority reported having children who attend a private Catholic school.

Still adapting. [We have] two children (second grade and 4-year-old kindergarten) enrolled at our local Catholic school. Both my wife and I have full-time jobs. I am a researcher, and my wife teaches middle school. The teachers have been amazing in how they’ve reached out. All things considered, it is going O.K., but the lack of social interaction with friends and family is wearing on us.

John Bowser
Beaver Dam, Wis.

Great! We’re making the most of our time together at home. Our children attend Catholic high school and grade school, and I’ve been impressed by the dedication and creativity of the teachers. Their schools used iPads and Google classroom for learning and homework already, so it was an easy transition for them. As a mother of five whose oldest is heading to college next year, I view this time together at home without our usual extracurricular commitments as a gift.

Amy Glenane
Orange, Calif.

It’s been tough. We have four children between the ages of 1 and 11—three in a Catholic elementary (kindergarten, second grade and fifth grade) and another in day care—that are now home with us. My husband and I both teach theology in Catholic high schools. All together we are trying to balance work with very different needs among our children. We tried working in shifts, one person on the job, another with the kids. But in order to teach our children and deal with any learning and emotional issues that arise, we really need both of us on task. Now, we are each teaching our children and toggling between work at the same time. My husband and I are really making a concerted effort to communicate needs and seek balance for all of us. We are fortunate to have supportive communities that understand the difficulty of these times.

Christine Hernandez
Sugar Land, Tex.

It’s been gradual. At first, the schools assigned work to be done on the children's own time, but there have lately been times when they needed to sign on to Google classroom or Zoom. Teachers are assigning more work than my students feel like completing, but teachers have been very forgiving and chalking it up to unstable home conditions.

Teresa Skelton
Freehold, N.J.

Quite well. Surprisingly well. My fifth grader has thrived on the independence and responsibility of tracking his day. My eighth grader misses her friends and all the eighth grade celebrations before high school. Online school may actually be the antidote to “senioritis” (or “eighth-grade-itis”) because she misses her friends and the social parts of school so much that she wants to go online and “see” them.

Meghan Roddy
Houston, Tex.

We were homeschooling using a Catholic curriculum for the last five years. We are keeping up with our usual school lessons to allow dad the quiet to work from home and so that we will have time to go have fun when things open up again. All of our extracurricular activities have stopped for a time, but some are starting to set up online options. I set up a Facebook page called “Temporary Homeschooling 2020” to give brick and mortar school parents access to homeschooling parents who can offer support. I feel for them. We are doing so well because we have had years to establish our structures and routines. These parents got thrown into this with little to no background. Most of what we do is offer emotional and rallying support.

Sara Giorgis
Silver Spring, Md.

More: Education

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