Parents, schools finding ways to continue teaching students during coronavirus outbreak

“Having 3 different kids in 3 different schools is leaving me really overwhelmed,” said Amy Gallagher.

The Encino Mom speaking to us via FaceTime is expressing what millions of parents around the country and here in Los Angeles are likely feeling. Gallagher learned on Friday that LAUSD schools were closing and her kids would now have to be homeschooled:

“It wasn’t until last night that I really started to have some anxiety about it, I had trouble sleeping,” said Gallagher.

“For each student we want to make sure there is as much normalcy in their life as we can and part of that normalcy is the school community,” said LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner.

He says he and his team have been working around the clock to make sure students are equipped to learn at home with computers and internet access for those that can get online. 

“We’ve gotten apps, my daughter was sent home with quite a bit of work to do on her own so they’ve given us a really nice blueprint of how they want our days to run,” said Gallagher. 

But unlike Gallagher, a staggering 80 percent of LAUSD students live in poverty. For those without web access, the district has a plan for remote learning utilizing its partnership with PBS.

So we together with PBS created 3 stations of content that’s running that could be seen right now from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. one for earliest learners... One for middle and one for high schoolers,” Beutner said.

The district is distributing these lesson plans and viewing schedules to coincide with remote learning on PBS.

At the Gallagher house, the kids are tackling their schoolwork. Amy says she learned very quickly that she needs to keep the kids on a schedule and calmly remind them of why they’re at home for now:

“We’re trying to let our kids know that the reason that we’re doing this is because we just don’t want to get anybody sick.”