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While teachers are happy for switching to virtual learning, some Little Rock School District parents worried how it impacts their children’s future



Little Rock, Arkansas – Starting Thursday, LRSD students were officially switched to virtual learning because of the high number of Covid-19 cases in the area.

According to Little Rock School District superintendent Mike Poore announcement on Wednesday, the school district had no other option but to switch to virtual learning because ‘high number’ of their staff reported they contracted the virus which directly affects the teaching process, transportation, food services and students.

While teachers are happy to switch to virtual learning since they won’t be exposed to the virus that much, the virtual learning is a real struggle for some parents who are now forced to look over their children or hire someone to take care of them while they are at work.

One of them is Jacklyn Pittman, a single mother of three LRSD students, who had to take off work so she can look over the kids while they are home. Just like many other parents, she didn’t expect that the school district will switch to virtual learning this school year.

“I did not think that we would be starting the school year on this note,” Pittman said. “I thought that we would at least, they would at least be in class for at least a week to kind of see how things would go.”

Her children are little and still not capable to look over themselves. She added that they are in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and her oldest is in 5th grade at Fullbright Elementary School.

While she appreciates the district’s decision to switch to virtual learning to keep both the students and school staff as safe as possible during the Omicron wave, she spent almost all of her time off the job last year to watch over her children while they were unable to attend in-person teaching.

“I have exhausted all of my PTO time at my job over the last year, just mainly due to school closing or shifting to virtual learning,” Pittman said.

Pittman is afraid that the risks losing her job is this ‘virtual learning’ trend continues in the future.

“If this continues to go on then I will have to kind of look for other means to keep us afloat,” she said.

Another major issue she faces with the virtual learning is that her children are used to do all their school work the regular way, not on computers.

“They actually don’t like doing the school work on the computer at all. That has been a challenge to kind of shift from doing on paper, to doing everything on the computer,” Pittman said.

Meanwhile, other parents are questioned their children’s future with the virtual learning since it’s proven that virtual learning doesn’t achieve the wanted and expected results. Last school year when students spent most of the school year home, majority of the students showed much lower than expected results in school.

LRSD schools switched to virtual learning on Thursday and Friday. On Sunday, Moore should reveal if students will get back to class or the virtual learning will be extended in the next week too.