The Pittsburgh Learning Collaborative, a coalition of more than 70 groups and individuals, seeks transparency in plans for a return to in-person instruction so the community can help it work toward specific goals.
(TNS) — A coalition of education equity advocates wants to know what it will take for the
The Pittsburgh Learning Collaborative, a coalition of more than 70 groups and individuals, seeks transparency from the district in its plans for a return to in-person instruction so the community can help it work toward specific goals.
"Is a 5% positivity rate threshold your target? Will there be a phased in approach to in-person learning starting with younger and more at-risk learners? Is the internet bandwidth sufficient at schools for teachers and students to be able to participate online? If not, is there anything the community can do to help fix that problem?" said
"Families with elementary school students face serious challenges if we continue online learning for the rest of the school year," she said. "It is a burden for families with working parents to support young students with their online learning. Students are falling behind at astronomical rates, and parents are struggling to hold everything together."
Another member of the coalition, Dr. Braveen Ragunanthan, encouraged the district to think ahead.
The pediatrician said the district should rally members of the school community to receive the COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available.
"We need to start planning for our next steps proactively in 2021," Dr. Ragunanthan said. "Furthermore, adult unmasked gatherings have always been the drivers of this pandemic — not schools. Thus, a key strategy for us will be PPS having an aggressive campaign encouraging PPS staff and our PPS parents and adult family members to all get vaccinated to be protected from COVID-19 in 2021."
In the meantime, the coalition asked the district to set aside $2 million to support beyond the end of the year the learning hubs that hundreds of city students have attended during the fall semester. The $2 million would ensure that the hubs can operate into early 2021.
The 24 learning hubs with 64 locations across
Many students who attend the hubs have parents who are essential workers and can't stay home to help with schooling. The huPropertiesbs give those families a place where their children can be cared for and have some assistance during the school day.
"They have a role to play in maintaining and keeping our economy going, feeding us,"
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