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What metro Detroit teachers want parents to know about virtual learning

Posted at 5:01 AM, Sep 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-01 05:53:40-04

(WXYZ) — The first day of school is in the books, and some parents and students faced frustration over the new format of learning virtually.

Typically during the school year, in just a couple of hours, school parking lots would be packed with parents dropping off students.

But not this fall as students are learning online and getting used to a new normal.

"Pack your patience," said Carrie Estabrook.

Carrie Estabrook, a teacher in Walled Lake, reflects on how the first day of virtual school went for her class at Meadowbrook Elementary and what she suggests parents keep in mind.

"One thing I learned from today is that you need to have the patience, said Estabrook. "It's going to take a little bit, grace to everyone, appreciation...teachers are working hard."

Estabrook says it's harder working remotely than in-person.

For one, several districts, from Clarkston to Livonia, experienced technical issues – students having trouble logging in for class and facing various glitches.

Estabrook also suggests trouble shooting on the parent's end.

"My big thing is just having parents practice with their child, especially, we know it's different than in the spring. In the spring it might be two Zooms or three Zooms," said Estabrook. "Now, we're on from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m."

In the Rochester Community School District, nearly 15,000 students are enrolled. They're using Google classroom until it's deemed safe to learn in-person again.

Students who qualify for food assistance will still get free breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday.

Social and emotional support will be available in-person and remotely.

All in all, teachers like Estabrook are glad to be back.

"It was neat to see them learn even though it was virtual," said Estabrook.

Just a few reminders: Find a quiet spot for your child to work, invest in some noise-cancelling headphones, and teach your child how to mute their computer when they're not speaking.