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Ms. McDonald’s Classroom Edit display name

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I am a second grade teacher in Massachusetts at a large, urban, title 1 elementary school called H. Elementary. The school community is made up of a majority of English Language Learners and due to the low SES of the community as a whole, students all receive free daily breakfast and lunch at school. However, due to COVID 19 we are now required to take all of our learning virtually, which is especially difficult to do successfully because of barriers like languages spoken at home, access to technology, parents still working, health issues, education level of some parents, and other stressors caused by living in poverty. Though I cannot address or solve most of those barriers, one that I could change is their access to technology, which truly now has become their access to knowledge. Many of my students are below grade level, and my biggest concern is that the achievement gap is only going to be larger after this pandemic, specifically because of the economic discrepancies holding some schools back. Though the district is attempting to offer paper packet alternatives, the essential interactive piece of learning would then, in my opinion, be stripped away from students. The philosophy of, “that’s the best we can do,” does not suffice, and to me signals surrender before trying to fight for equity. I have 22 students and about 10 of them have either not been able to be contacted, or they have not been able to participate in our online learning due to the fact that their only access to technology is their mother’s phone. Please donate 8 tablets to my students.

About my class

I am a second grade teacher in Massachusetts at a large, urban, title 1 elementary school called H. Elementary. The school community is made up of a majority of English Language Learners and due to the low SES of the community as a whole, students all receive free daily breakfast and lunch at school. However, due to COVID 19 we are now required to take all of our learning virtually, which is especially difficult to do successfully because of barriers like languages spoken at home, access to technology, parents still working, health issues, education level of some parents, and other stressors caused by living in poverty. Though I cannot address or solve most of those barriers, one that I could change is their access to technology, which truly now has become their access to knowledge. Many of my students are below grade level, and my biggest concern is that the achievement gap is only going to be larger after this pandemic, specifically because of the economic discrepancies holding some schools back. Though the district is attempting to offer paper packet alternatives, the essential interactive piece of learning would then, in my opinion, be stripped away from students. The philosophy of, “that’s the best we can do,” does not suffice, and to me signals surrender before trying to fight for equity. I have 22 students and about 10 of them have either not been able to be contacted, or they have not been able to participate in our online learning due to the fact that their only access to technology is their mother’s phone. Please donate 8 tablets to my students.

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