In June Family Voices joined other Survival Coalition members to listen to families from across the state about the impact and potential barriers to education caused by the move to virtual learning. We hosted two focus groups to get this feedback―one for families statewide and one just for Milwaukee Public School families.
Our focus group participants shared that trying to be a parent, become their child’s teacher, problem-solve technical problems, and keep their child on task was very stressful. Many families also talked about having children who rely on paraprofessionals, school-based therapists and special education teachers during the school year. Virtual learning has meant that these students lost the one-on-one help and support needed to make academic progress.
“It was an extremely stressful time for my family; trying to work from home and help direct my child’s virtual learning; It was hard on my family.”
“Working full time AND having to be the teacher, becoming everything, was hard on my mental health.”
Survival Coalition members will submit a report with our findings and recommendations to the Department of Public Instruction and the Wisconsin Legislature to advocate for improving the virtual learning experiences of families and students with disabilities.