LOS ANGELES - Frances Suavillo smiled brightly from her computer screen to mine as we talked about the challenges of ''distance learning'' now that schools are shut down for the rest of the year.
The Carson High senior sounds a lot wiser than her 18 years when she tells FOX 11, ''I'm trying to see the bright side of things, it' s out of our control and out of the district's control, Suavillo said.
Suavillo is worried about many more students than herself and her friends, as she's the student member of the LAUSD board, and is currently working with Superintendent Austin Beutner, as he mentioned on his televised update on Monday, to help plan alternative graduations for seniors like her, who are disappointed of course to have lost this special time of their young lives.
The LAUSD, the country's second-largest district, is in the midst of a huge technical and practical conversion to a whole new way of teaching and learning.
There are gaps in online access, a lack of computers or tablets for all, a varied schedule by teachers, difficulty in making the technology work, the list goes on.
The LAUSD and the teachers union UTLA, who don't always see eye to eye to put it politely, have agreed on a new framework for all this that averages four hours a day of instruction, doesn't mandate video conferencing, installs at least three weekly sessions of teacher ''office hours'', and, significantly, guarantees no student will get a lower grade than what they had when all this began in March, though they can certainly get a higher grade.
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Both sides issued a statement saying in essence, our shared goal is to help students learn.
Suavillo, who has been accepted to multiple colleges already, is finishing up eight, yes 8 online courses, but of course one of them was already a sort of bonus course, on line French, which was already in progress before schools shut down.
She's a determined, motivated, successful high achiever who I really enjoyed talking to, even it was remotely. The task is to bring along the other 700,000 plus students on the same kind of journey.