Remote learning during a pandemic has already proven to be challenging for millions of students across the country.
“School is good and bad,” says 15-year old DJ, who is a freshman in central Ohio.
We are not using DJ’s last name because he along with his mother and two younger siblings are right now staying at the CHOICES shelter for families escaping domestic violence.
“It’s just hard,” DJ’s mom Tameka said. “When I came here [to CHOICES], I just felt a weight lifted off my shoulders, they really care about you,” she added.
For more than four decades, LSS Choices has been the sole resource for families seeking resources and shelter in Franklin County.
Given the pandemic and lack of fundraising abilities, there is an even greater need to fund resources – like extra shelter beds and space.
As a result of COVID-19, CHOICES hired an education specialist to help children at the shelter learn remotely while also helping parents reconnect with their children in a safe space.
“They’re coming from spaces where kids didn’t have resources or support or safety to do school,” said Elle Minich who oversees up to 20 kids and their parents every day.
She makes makes sure they can log in to Zoom classes and other materials needed for the school curriculum.
“But watching parents devote that time to kids is good to watch,” she says with a smile.
While DJ admits he’d rather be gaming than schooling, he also says coming to CHOICES was the best decision his mom could make for him and his siblings.
“So we can get away from the problems,” he said. “I’m kind of happy we’re not around any trouble or anything.”
Tameka says she’s happy too. And while virtual schooling with her children is difficult, she is grateful for the support from CHOICES to allow her this time with her children.
“As long as I’m not going backwards and I’m moving forward, it’s going to be good,” Tameka said with a hopeful smile.
If you’d like to help CHOICES and the families they serve, you can text the word “CHOICES” to 50155.